Giuseppe Veneziano's Blue Banana


A giant blue banana invades one of the most beautiful squares in Tuscany. It is the large sculpture that Giuseppe Veneziano (Mazzarino, 1971), one of the best known and most appreciated Italian neo-pop artists, brings to Piazza del Duomo in Pietrasanta for his new exhibition "The Blue Banana".


The exhibition, promoted by the Municipality of Pietrasanta and curated by Andrea B. Del Guercio, and set up from 20 June to 14 September 2021, was specially conceived for the spaces of Piazza Duomo and the Historic Center and the event will be organized following a path which will involve the public in a game of discoveries and revelations among fourteen monumental works, all born and made in the marble workshops and bronze foundries of Pietrasanta. The title of the entire exhibition applies to the large dimensions of the sculpture that Giuseppe Veneziano brings in front of the Cathedral and alludes to the economic-financial dimension of Western Europe, in which the great political capitals are connected, from London to Frankfurt, from Paris to Brussels. , from Basel to Milan and Turin. Veneziano "draws", in the geography of the Old Continent, a megalopolis, identifying how much the production area has taken the form of a banana recognizable in the "blue" of the European Union. In the work, the economic and political reference merges with the contemporary artistic one, where the banana refers to one of the icons of Andy Warhol's Pop Art, symbol of the famous album cover by Velvet Underground & Nico. The Blue Banana thus summarizes the artistic research of Giuseppe Veneziano, attentive to the representation of the dilemmas that characterize today's society in all its forms (politics, entertainment, customs), but also mindful of the evolutions and paths of art in history.


"The spatial centrality of the large fruit and an intense monochromy, an iconic subject capable of combining infantile nutrition with the erotic dimension of adults, plays the monumental 'ancient' role around which the articulated story revolves by dissemination for 'images' that Veneziano has put his hand to. Along the connective tissue dedicated to the great tradition of art, there are allusions to news personalities, historical characters, icons of cinema and comics, contemporary actors. It is through the mash-up technique (the same used by many contemporary dee-jays) that Veneziano connects contrasting elements, obtaining images capable of creating unprecedented and surprising visual associations: Dante Alighieri (which this year marks the anniversary of the 700 years from death) intent on writing his Divine Comedy on a Macbook laptop, Dolce and Gabbana, along the lines of the other famous Italian-English artistic couple Gilbert & George, Charlie Chaplin with Venus, Assassin Snow White, Michelangelo's David, Spider Man with his son and finally in the churchyard of Sant'Agostino Pope Francis on a skateboard. With the iconographic tools he has at his disposal, which he inherits from school memory and which he re-elaborates by imposing himself on the monumental, noble heritage of the past, Veneziano confirms that he belongs to a finally independent expressive culture; the expressive operation 'overwhelms' every widespread fear induced by global confrontation, bypasses with freedom of action the search for limited and protected spaces,' archiving 'any attempt to condition in a single cultural geography, free from the obligation to' locate 'the linguistic dimension of art ”.

April 16, 2021