Pier Paolo Calzolari (b. 1943) is one of the most significant Italian artists of the post-war period and one of the still-active original members of the Arte Povera movement. His 1969 text ‘La casa ideale’, and its realisation through a series of works is considered one of the seminal statements of the movement. His work, concurrent to that of Conceptual art and Post – Minimalism, has rapidly evolved beyond the confines of a defined movement.
Calzolari distinguished himself from other Arte Povera artists through his refusal of the avant-garde’s rejection of the past. His work seeks an equal and horizontal relationship between past, present and future. While his work shared similarities, it veered in a unique direction, bringing in elements of Renaissance painting and the Romantic movement. Calzolari’s sculptural installations are known for capturing ephemera and use elemental materials including frost, fire, salt, lead, water, copper, neon, moss, roses, feathers, eggs and tobacco leaves.
The work of Pier Paolo Calzolari is included in numerous museum collections and has been exhibited at Documenta, MoMA, Fondazione Prada and other prominent institutions.