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If art gives rise to common languages by building bridges between people and cultures, Italian artists express, through a wealth of techniques, the creative spirit that the rest of the world often associates with our country.

It is for this very reason that our public diplomacy activities start again with a focus contemporary art, through a series of initiatives organised by the Italian Embassy in London, from the 13th to the 18th of October 2021, under the umbrella of #Italy4Art.

We start with Spotlight Italia, a special project within Saatchi Gallery’s Start Art Fair.

For the first time ever, StArt will dedicate a unique area in the StART Projects section to Italy. Realized with and supported by the Italian Embassy in London, this high-powered showcase of contemporary Italian art is curated by Marco Tonelli and Serenella Ciclitira. In going beyond the traditional view of Italian art, often intrinsically associated to more classical and renaissance era currents, seven Italian artists strike a contemporary vein and embody the wider national context: a dynamic, modern and ever-evolving atmosphere, where a glorious past inspires new expressions of creativity.

We continue with Italy at Frieze, an initiative launched in 2019 to celebrate and promote Italian art in London through Frieze London and Frieze Masters, among the most prodigious contemporary art events on the global stage. Under the purview of art historian and curator Flavia Frigeri, Italian artworks of the post-war and contemporary period belonging to eighteen galleries participating in Frieze London and Frieze Masters will be on exclusive exhibit in the halls of the Embassy. The event-exhibition “Italy at Frieze”, part of the events calendar for Frieze members, will debut the 14th of October at 7 pm.

The 2021 edition of Italy at Frieze’s programme is further enriched by two more events on the 15th of October.

Artist Gaia Fugazza, writer and artistic director of In Between Film/Art Alessandro Rabottini and the above-mentioned Flavia Frigeri will participate in a breakfast talk titled “A view from London. Perspectives on Italian contemporary art”, held in our unique Embassy throughout the morning.

During the afternoon of the 15th, on the other hand, Italy at Frieze will host a special edition of Italy4Innovation, the Embassy’s own series dedicated to exploring innovation and technological cooperation between Italy and the United Kingdom. The meeting’s main theme will be the revolution of the art landscape provoked by its digitalisation. In fact, artworks realised and marketed as non-fungible tokens have recently risen to prominence as one of the most important items being debated by the industry’s experts, with some even reaching price tags in the millions. Through a discussion with art critics, artists, technological experts, and representatives of galleries and auction houses, the conversation promises to analyse the phenomenon through various lenses and perspectives: commercial, technological, social and artistic.

Lastly, the #Italy4Art cycle comes to its natural conclusion with the Italian Design Day titled “Gio Ponti’s legacy in contemporary Italian design”, held in conjunction with Salvatore Licitra (Gio Ponti’s nephew), Giulia Molteni and Taschen on the 18th of October 2021.