Curated by Rudi Fuchs and Johannes Gachnang
The objective of “Ouverture II” was to explore further the concepts initially examined in the Castello di Rivoli’s inaugural exhibition of the same name. The Castello reiterated its primary aim, to create the first public collection in Italy dedicated to contemporary art, giving space to specific moments and movements in Italian art and placing its exponents within an international context. Rather than offering a straightforward chronological survey of contemporary art that focused on major events and movements, the museum wanted to assert its identity by making its own choices that highlighted individual artists’ creativity.
In the spirit of continuity, this exhibition thus provided a moment for reflection, as well as an opportunity for the Castello to renew and reinforce the original declaration of intent that it made in 1984. As ever, the contemporary art works presented in the exhibition created a fascinating dialogue with the unique historical character of the Castello’s interiors. Each of the rooms was devoted to the work of a single artist (some of the pieces had been installed in the museum during the previous year). The works presented in this exhibition included Giovanni Anselmo’s important installation Senza titolo (Untitled, 1986), comprising 100 canvases stacked on top of each other and surmounted by stones, and two works by Luciano Fabro, Piede (Foot, 1968–71), and Croce (Cross, 1965–86).
Among the pieces created specially for the Castello were Maria Nordman’s installations, collectively entitled Incontro tra la Dora e il Po, (Meeting of the Dora and Po Rivers, 1985): a room constructed in relation to the doors and windows of the building, and a piece made out of old Valdieri stone for the exterior balcony. Wolfgang Laib’s Polvere di polline (Pollen powder, 1985) was a completely pure space dedicated to meditation; while Gilberto Zorio explored the dream world in Sogno in un sottotetto (Dream in an attic, 1986), a dynamic aerial sculpture.