London Art Reviews

Magazine of art press and reviews from London

The Ramo and the Estorick two collections collaboration exhibition, London.

Manlio Rho, Senza titolo (Composizione), 1937-38 © Ramo Collection, ph. co. Estorick Collection

The Ramo Collection exhibition closed with great success, at the Estorick Collection, London.

The exhibition “Who’s Afraid of Drawing?” at the Estorick Collection presented over 60 works on paper from the Ramo Collection, for the first time on show in London and in the UK.

The Estorick Collection exhibition examined drawing as an art form in its own right, instead of just a preparatory activity. For artists, drawing is a way to turn a thought into a material form.

Located in Milan, the Ramo Collection brings together outstanding works from the most important Italian art movements in 20th century, including images by Umberto Boccioni, Giorgio de Chirico, Lucio Fontana, Alighiero Boetti, Pino Pascali and many more.

Created by the entrepreneur Giuseppe ‘Pino’ Rabolini, the Ramo Collection is the largest private collection of 20th century Italian art on paper, and comprises nearly 600 works.

This exhibition spans the years 1900-1980s. It is organised thematically under four headings which pose the questions: Abstractions?, Figurations?, Words + Images =? and What About Sculptors?. By focusing on the medium of drawing, it traces the development of Italian art over the 20th century.

It presents imagery created by artists better known for their works on canvas, such as Tancredi, Burri, Castellani and Gnoli, or for sculpture (Wildt, Rosso, Marini and Consagra). Artists including Rho, Munari and Manzoni were displayed alongside works on paper by figures celebrated for their Arte Povera installations, such as Merz, Kounellis and Anselmo.

Following the exhibition, each work displayed will be left to rest for at least one year in the Ramo Collection archives. Before their being purchased, in fact, many of the pieces were kept in inadequate conditions, therefore are now in a delicate state. They were often considered archival pieces rather than part of the artist’s oeuvre and this has led to some sensitive conservation.

The exhibition is curated by Irina Zucca Alessandrelli in collaboration with Museo del Novecento in Milan, Italy, where it was first shown.

A stop motion video animation by Virgilio Villoresi, brings the images from the collection to life, and accompanies the exhibition.

Two publications by Irina Zucca Alessandrelli will accompany the show: an exhibition catalogue entitled Who’s Afraid of Drawing? , and a 400-page publication Italian Drawings of the 20th Century offers a new perspective on the study of works on paper, based on the Ramo Collection.

The exhibition is dedicated to Pino Rabolini (1935-2018), who started the Ramo Collection in the 1990s and died suddenly last August. Rabolini was the founder of an Italian jewellery brand. He had a particular interest in drawings and works on paper, including watercolours, collages, gouaches and pastels. The Ramo Collection is curated by Irina Zucca Alessandrelli and is based in Milan, Italy.

Based on the Ramo Collection works, the exhibition “Who’s Afraid of Drawing?” was at the Estorick Collection of Modern Italian Art, London, from 17th April until 23rd June 2019.

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This entry was posted on June 24, 2019 by in Museums, News and tagged , , , , .


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