Saturday, September 20, 2014
 

Art Critic Leads Opposition to Buren Project

a1bdd0216fce6daaf236fa726755887aThis battle between Italy and France may come down to…orange juice. Italian art critic, Vittorio Sgarbi, is successfully leading the protest against a public art installation by French conceptual artist, Daniel Buren.

The project is supposed to be installed in the coastal town of La Spezia, southeast of Genoa, in one of the main squares, Piazza Giuseppe Verdi. An environmental group led by Sgarbi have caused the ministry of culture to backtrack on a project it had already approved.

According to The Art Newspaper, “At the moment, construction is on hold. Those supporting the redesign say the delay is costing the city €2,000 a day and that the project, which is estimated to cost around €2.8m, could lose all EU funding if it is not completed by the end of 2014.”

 

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  • Mauro Bertocchi

    Appeal for the defense of Piazza Verdi, La Spezia, in compliance with the citizen’s constitutional rights and the rules in force about conservation

    We join the appeal launched by different sectors of the population of the town of La Spezia, who claim a fundamental right to transparency and to participation in the territorial transformation processes related to the project of renovating the central Piazza Giuseppe Verdi.
    In more than 70 years, the square has maintained the same structure, albeit with some intervention that has not substantially altered the initial features, and preserves the historical-architectural original design. Piazza Verdi has also survived the bombings that battered La Spezia in World War II.
    The City Council ignored the monumental constraint (which the square is submitted to) by providing the authority of protection (the Superintendence for the Architectural and Landscape Heritage) with a wrong dating of the site, and intends to operate a restructuring that is, in fact, a remake: the project, which is not including the restoration of the original materials, contemplates instead an abundant use of cement on a fragile site, located a short distance from the sea, and insisting on a delicate water balance.
    The procedure that led to the approval of the project also contains significant procedural deficiencies that forced the Superintendence to suspend the execution of the project, and start the procedure of “cultural interest assessment” required by the Code of Cultural Heritage.
    It is an intervention that hopelessly distorts the identity of the square, irreversibly erasing its historical memory, and that dismantles the site by inserting at the place of the existing trees various foreign elements, of questionable architectural quality, such as portals and pillars of light, squared sinks, and other interventions that do not harmonize with the surrounding buildings.
    One wonders how it is once again possible to think of disrupting the core of a town without involving the citizens, i.e. the legitimate owners of the rights on the town, thus encroaching a right enshrined in our Constitution, and ignoring the Community provision which provides EU co-financed projects be shared with the population.
    The battle of the citizens of La Spezia is a civil battle, in defense of the common good and of the historical shape of an Italian “piazza”, which belongs to the cultural heritage of the Country, especially in a town that has lost part of its artistic heritage and which should focus on the preservation of the residual part through a restoration, respectful of local identity, without venturing into questionable, worth millions, “façade” transactions, which are completely out of context.
    The direction which has been taken must be reversed: our task and the task of the Administrators must be of increasingly be vigilant, protecting the Italian history and landscape, recalling that the Code means for “Landscape” “parts of the territory whose distinguishing features are derived from nature, from human history or from their interrelationship”, whose protection concerns “those values it expresses as perceptible manifestations of identity.” Landscape is not only an “aesthetic” reality (to look at), but also an “ethical” one (to live in) as it regards our well-being, the health and the quality of life of individuals and communities.

    Adhere the appeal:

    Aderiscono all’appello:

    Marco Parini, presidente nazionale “Italia Nostra”.

    Vittorio Cogliati Dezza, presidente nazionale “Legambiente”.

    Salvatore Settis, archeologo e storico dell’arte, Accademico dei Lincei.

    Riccardo Adami, (La Spezia) fisico, Politecnico di Torino.

    Paolo Bensi, (La Spezia) chimico e letterato, professore di Strumenti e Metodi per la conoscenza e la conservazione del costruito, Dip. Scienze dell’Architettura, e di Storia delle Tecniche Artistiche, Scuola di Specializzazione in Beni Architettonici e del Paesaggio, Università di Genova.

    Antonio Bertoli, editore, artista, poeta e saggista, co-fondatore di “City Lights Italia”.

    Fabio Carlini, (La Spezia) critico cinematografico.

    Carlo Da Pozzo, (La Spezia) ordinario di Geografia, Dipartimento di Civiltà e Forme del Sapere, Università di Pisa.

    Roberto M. Danese, (La Spezia) docente di Filologia Classica, Università degli Studi di Urbino “Carlo Bo”.

    Vezio De Lucia, architetto, saggista, redattore e vicedirettore di Eddyburg.it, docente universitario, già Direttore Generale dell‘Urbanistica e membro del Consiglio Superiore dei Lavori pubblici.

    Vittorio Emiliani, giornalista e scrittore, presidente del Comitato per la Bellezza.

    Marco Ferrari, (La Spezia) giornalista e scrittore.

    Franco Ferrini, (La Spezia) sceneggiatore.

    Alberto Gabrielli, dottore forestale.

    Serenella Iovino, professore di Etica, Dip. di Lingue e Letterature Straniere e di Culture Moderne, Università di Torino; membro del Comitato consultivo della “EASLCE European Association for the Study of Literature, Culture and Environment”; Research Fellow della Fondazione “Alexander-von-Humboldt”.

    Tomaso Kemeny, poeta, anglista, già docente Università di Pavia.

    Massimo Marino, critico teatrale, docente Conservatorio di Parma.

    Michele Marsonet, preside della Scuola di Scienze umanistiche Università di Genova e prorettore agli Affari Internazionali.

    Ettore M. Mazzola, architetto, professore di Urbanismo Tradizionale, Architettura e Tecniche di Costruzione, “The University of Notre Dame – School of Architecture”, South Bend (IN) USA, membro del Consiglio direttivo dell’IMCL “International Making Cities Livable.

    Matteo Meschiari, antropologo del paesaggio, Università di Palermo.

    Tomaso Montanari, professore associato di Storia dell’Arte Moderna, Dip. di Studi Umanistici, Università di Napoli “Federico II”.

    Maria Rosa Montiani, artista e performer, docente di storia dell’arte.

    Arrigo Petacco, (La Spezia) storico.

    Paola Polito, (La Spezia) già lettrice Università di Copenaghen, coordinatrice “Laboratorio Internazionale sul Paesaggio” (San Biagio della Cima, IM).

    Oliviero Ponte di Pino, art director “Book city”, Milano.

    Massimo Quaini, geografo, già ordinario di Geografia, Università di Genova.

    Alberto Roncaccia, italianista, Faculté des Lettres, Università di Losanna.

    Paolo Rosa, artista visivo, co-fondatore di “Studio Azzurro”.

    Arturo Schwarz, storico dell’arte, saggista, collezionista, docente e poeta italiano.

    Angelo Tonelli, (La Spezia) grecista, poeta, performer, autore e regista teatrale.

    Flavia Trivella, giornalista, saggista e esperta del restauro architettonico.

    Massimo Venturi Ferriolo, filosofo del paesaggio, professore di Estetica, Dip. di Architettura e Studi Urbani, Politecnico di Milano.

    Antonio Zollino, ricercatore, Facoltà di Scienze della Formazione, Dipartimento di Italianistica e Comparatistica, Università Cattolica di Milano.

     
     
     
 
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