At Villa Medici del Vascello in the “sea” of Lanfredini

Saint John on the Cross – Eighteen unique works in an unusual container: Villa Medici del Vasilo. “Traversamenti” is the title of the exhibition that opened on Saturday at San Giovanni in Croce, and will open until June 5 in the rooms and in the garden of the historic residence of the Cecilia Gallerani A noblewoman from Milan who is best known as “The Lady with an Ermine” by Leonardo da Vinci.

The absolute protagonist of the show: Italo Lanfredinithe sculptor of Sabbioneta known to the general public as “La Silenziosa”, the wonderful home workshop he created in Commessaggio, and for the creation of “Arianna’s Labyrinth”, a monumental work of contemporary art on the Nebrodi Mountains (in Sicily) which in 1988 won the International Sculpture Competition organized by Antonio Presti With eleven other wonders brought to life in the open-air Fiumara Dart Museum.


The exhibition takes place in the garden and in the interiors of the villa that was home to Cecilia Gallerani “The Lady with the Ermine”

In Villa Medici del Vascello, Lanfredini re-proposes his art composed of works that cannot be admired from a distance, but must be crossed, touched, and trampled upon. In short, to live.


“Lost Traveler Threshold” (seven elements of oak and elm accompany the visitor towards the park)

They are sculptures, lintels and installations that interact with each other and with the building and the garden that hosts it, combining matter, poetry, objectivity and suggestions. Surprising works that investigate the meaning of life And enhance the importance of light. Additional work pays tribute to hundreds of years Mario Lodithe pedagogical teacher from Piadina who taught at San Giovanni for more than seven years, with whom the artist was a personal friend: he “judgment”, a work consisting of more than a thousand terracotta filtered by a large sieve. No less suggestive is “nests” which rises towards the sky at the entrance to the castle of the villa, “Lost Passenger Threshold” (Seven elements in oak and elm accompany the visitor towards the park) and “Pirogues – Seas” It is enriched by 55 poems written by authors from all over the world: among others, MathuraAnd John KinsellaAnd Evelina SchatzAnd Jean Francois BureAnd Alice Catherine Carles And Maria Grazia Calendroni. Each one tells in his mother tongue the sea, the sailing, the inland journeys, the crossings into the unknown, the broken relationships, the invisible connections.

I invited a hundred poets to sail and row with me in the sea, and I sent each of them pictures of my boats, without adding anything, for I am against every wall and every limit.

“I have invited a hundred poets to sail and row with me in the sea, and I send to each of them pictures of my boats, without adding anything, for I am against every wall and every fetter – reveals to Infredini -. Ali answered 15 Italian poets and 37 others from all over the world: Australia, Greece, Ecuador, Turkey, France, Russia, Norway, China, Japan, even an American Indian.. Almost all of them are university professors and success poets. Some sent me handwritten texts, others sent me typewritten lines that I copied and reproduced in my own handwriting on the color matrices that complete the work. The sea itself is an invitation to travel and knowledge and poetry has given me the opportunity to direct my arc in a thousand directions. Do the pillars of Hercules exist? Yes, but as he said Paul Gauguin It is enough to cross them “desire to desire”: the young man tries, throws himself; Those who disavow, and those who do not, on the contrary, condemn themselves to old age. Preparatory work for this work lasted for two years, but now the fruit of a lot of effort is here to see“.

And it couldn’t have a better enclosure than a villa called Medici… del Vascello. “Having been born in Sabionetta, I have always wandered in these parts and have always been fascinated by the character of Cecilia Galerani, not a woman of easy virtue, as one would immediately think when it comes to a mistress, but a high-ranking humanist, open to art and poetry, which he adores so much. Ludovico il Moro he had a son, CaesarUnfortunately, he died at the age of twenty due to his obesity – recalls Lanfredini -. When Leonardo da Vinci photographed her, Cecilia Gallerani sent a knight to Mantua to show her friend for thirty days. Isabella d’Este The masterpiece that will be known worldwide as The Lady with Ermine. This was also a very difficult crossing… ».


Italo Lanfriedini and “Peroge Marie” sang 55 poems written by authors from all over the world.

Outside the villa they are surprising “Shanghai” (artistic game near the Dutch hut), “Kouros and Korai(With the magic of mirrors in the well) and – Beyond the lake – “The womb of the seed”In it, live twelve eggs that shift from dawn to dusk like the gears of a clock to the sun. The purpose of the work is to honor the great sculptor Constantine Brancusi And he hides a surprise inside each egg, in addition to remembering the importance of memory, because – as Lanfredini warns – “You can’t go on without looking back every now and then.”

(Editing: Angelo Guedelli)

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