Biennale Light Art Mantova 2020

An ode to light through the deconstruction and reconstruction of spaces

The Biennale Light Art Mantova is back for the 2020 edition, titled Elogio della luce tra destrutturazione e ricostruzione degli spazi (an ode to light through the deconstruction and reconstruction of spaces). A real challenge for the Italian and international light art, called to measure up with venues like Andrea Mantegna’s house and the Temple by Leon Battista Alberti, two of the most important and acclaimed Italian artists and architects from the 15th and 16th centuries.

The Biennale Light Art Mantova 2020, curated by art critic Vittorio Erlindo and sponsored by Eni, the event’s main partner, sees a collaboration between Gisella Gellini and Gaetano Corica for the black light section.

Involving 34 artists invited to interpret this year’s theme – an ode to light through the deconstruction and reconstruction of spaces – the exhibition will open September 26 at 6pm, and will be running until December 31, 2020.


The Biennale aims to build a strong, yet delicate dialogue between the artists’ pieces and the interiors and grounds of Mantegna’s House and San Sebastiano’s Temple by Leon Battista Alberti. Being geographically close, the two buildings allow a comprehensive view of the Gonzaga family’s urban, artistic and design strategies.

Located in southern Mantua, near the Teieto island, almost on the outskirts of the city, both have now become tourist landmarks.

The city of Mantua will shine with a new light at the Biennale Light Art, whose 2020 edition will include two sections: Light Art (lit-up pieces) and Black Light (works lit-up by Wood’s lamps, which Lucio Fontana already tested in 1949).

The Black Light section features works by Federica Marangoni, Mario Agrifoglio, Leonilde Carabba, Paolo Scirpa, Giulio De Mitri, and Carlo Bernardini, whom the Biennale intends to celebrate as household names of this art. In the Light Art section, first- and second-generation world famous artists will take part, alongside younger talents.

Counting 34 artists and the diverse approaches they represent on the Italian and international scene, the Biennale gives a broad, articulate glimpse of the techniques and poetics in use.

Art and science have always mixed and confronted with other’s techniques through creativity, imagination and visionary power. The only practice that they will not stand for is copying, which leads both to reflect and think in ways opposite to common sense, to look for answers at the existential questions that humankind has not been able to solve yet

says curator Vittorio Erlindo.

At Mantua’s Biennale, the bond between art and scientific progress clearly emerges from their ties to the different luminous materials that the artists use, for a harmony that can open new perspectives – not just for art, but for science too

After a 2018 edition in the vast spaces of Palazzo Ducale, the Biennale will now happen in smaller environments, built using the golden ratio by Andrea Mantegna for his family and art studio. Wood’s lamps, as well as light from the works themselves, will entirely replace all natural and artificial light at the house, thus redefining its spaces.

The Biennale Light Art will be previewed on a Virtual Tour by the curator and his collaborators and artists, who have given interviews and provided works to allow art enthusiasts to join the Biennale from home during Covid. The international launch of the Virtual Tour is planned for late July.

As Erlindo finishes,

Covid 19 scared us, but did not win us. Until four months ago, we did not know if the Biennale would be able to take place, so we recreated Mantegna’s House and San Sebastiano’s Temple on Cinema4D, and we added works and interviews with the artists inside of it. It is nothing like visiting the Biennale in person, but it is undoubtedly an opportunity that virtual reality now offers to those who will not be able to visit nor see Mantua, one of the most beautiful, harmonious Italian cities. For those who will have a chance to come, however, the Biennale will be open, and Virgil’s city ready to welcome them

Artists featured at the Biennale Light Art Mantova 2020

Mario Agrifoglio, Nino Alfieri, Peter Asmmann, Carlo Bernardini, Nicola Boccini, Leonilde Carabba, Davide Coltro, Guglielmo Paolo Conti, Giuliana Cuneaz, Davide Dall’Osso, Giulio De Mitri, Mario De Leo, Nicola Evangelisti, Elia Festa, Maria Cristiana Fioretti, Giovanna Fra, Silvia Guberti, Massimo Hachen, Margareta Hesse, Oky Izumi, Marco Lodola, Fardy Maes, Federica Marangoni, Vincenzo Marsiglia, Max Marra, Yari Miele, Mary Mutt, Pietro Pirelli, Francesca Romano, Sebastiano Romano, Giuseppe Rosini, Donatella Schillirò, Paolo Scirpa, Claudio Sek de Luca.



September 26 – December 31, 2020

Andrea Mantegna’s House

Grounds of San Sebastiano’s Temple by L. B. Alberti


Emanuela Zini
My professional life has been marked by several big changes that made me grow as a person and as a leader, develop new skills and mental flexibility, which in turn allows me to face challenges from a different, unique perspective. To me, writing represent a way to communicate with myself and with others. Telling stories and engaging my readers are the challenges that I am currently facing within a wider editorial project.

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