L’ARTE SERVE A CHI LA FA
THE ART SERVES TO WHOM DOES IT
instructions for creating an art work © Salvatore Licitra 2020
It is a matter of transforming into art the enunciation THE ART SERVES TO WHOM DOES IT.
The utterance must lose the assertive character determined by the consequential alphabetical structure in order to approach the expressiveness of an ideogram, becoming an occasion for calligraphic exercises.
It is necessary to bring each character to a form that highlights its essential structure of segments or semi-curves variously intersected.
Finally, thicken the characters in the centre of a wide and free field, as if they were subject to a centripetal force, so as to eliminate the functional character of the writing in favour of its formal protagonism.
It is not necessary for the result to be easily readable, since art takes place in the hand-eye dimension, and then lasts only as pure testimony.
Tending to the maximum synthesis exploiting, if the composition allows it, the possibility of a character to have double roles.
Of course, it is possible to vary the font of the work by experimenting with different dimensions, using colours in the spaces defined by the interweaving of the characters rather than their bodies and making unexpected backgrounds emerge, or by tracing the characters with materials and techniques of different expressiveness, or finally by perforating the surface with cut-outs that use the lines or areas defined by the drawing.
The colours are a tribute to the Italian artist Alighiero Boetti who had art made in Afghanistan, the structure is dedicated to the artist Bruno Munari who was no stranger to these exercises.
Salvatore Licitra was born in Milan in 1953, where he lives and works.
In 1973 he left his philosophy studies to start his professional activity as a contemporary art photographer, collaborating with the magazine “Domus” with photographs, but also with interviews, reviews and images/events made with artists (Paladino, Cragg, Nigro, Basquiat, Germanà, Le Witt, Barcelò, Gilbert & George, Condo). In 1976 he began working with the artist Vincenzo Agnetti, creating photographic images for the works: “Le stagioni si ripetono “1976 – “Mass Media” 1977 – “Il delitto “1977 – “Della provvisorietà “1978 – and for “Machiavelli 3O”, a book of poems in which the photographic images act as a punctuation (Ed. Guanda).
In 1990 the first solo exhibition at the Massari Pavilion of the Palazzo dei Diamanti in Ferrara with the edition curated by the Galleria Civica di Arte Moderna of “Bombe” (24 photographs and one text).
From 1990 is also the text “Piccolo Circolo Chiuso” (published with illustrations by Mìmmo Paladino from L’Arca Edizioni and, in limited edition, by Giorgio Upiglio -Grafica Uno) staged in 1993 with the direction of M. Schmidt, in Milan and at the Benevento Città Spettacolo theatre festival.
Since 1996 he has been the curator of Gio Ponti’s archive.
In 1998 he played Gio Ponti in “Seventy Angels on the Facade”, directed by Bob Wilson.
Important for the impulse given to his activity as an artist were the solo exhibitions “Io sono qui” from 10.2! in 2000, and “Pensieri, parole, opere” at the Danese Vodoz Foundation in 2002.
In 2003 the text “Chissà se gli architetti”, presented with recitation by Elisabetta Vergani and music by Cristiano Arcelli.
The exhibitions in Brussels in 2003 (“Absences/Presences” at the museum Le Botanique, “I accept only personal messages” at the Verrére Hermés and “Oriente, occidente, orizzonte” at the Artiscope gallery), were an opportunity to realize particularly challenging projects, presented in 2005, integrated with two new works, in the spaces of the O’Artoteca and Gallery 10.2!
Finally relevant in 2007 the solo show “Homeless” at Galleria Milano, with the publication of the text recited in the performance, and the participation in the exhibition “La parole nell’arte” at MART in Rovereto, and in 2011 the participation in the 54th Venice Biennale – Italian Pavilion with the work “Impollinatevi”. In 2013 the solo show “Casa mia” at space 46/B curated by Natalie Du Pasquier and George Sowden in Milan.
He curated the exhibition “Gio Ponti archidesigner” at MAD in Paris in 2018 and “Gio Ponti- Amare l’architettura” at MAXXI in 2019.