Libro/Oggetto: Italian Artists’ Books 1960 – Now

September 11 – December 4, 2010

Santa Monica Museum of Art


This small-format exhibit Libro/Oggetto: Italian Artists’ Books, offers a concise history of Italian artistic trends through a conventional and compact object: the artist’s book. It was conceived as a complement to the concurrent exhibit Combustione: Alberto Burri and America, a survey of approximately forty major works by the artist.

Libro/Oggetto features pieces from both colleagues and successor’s of Alberto Burri, creating a contextual framework for his productions. The exhibition is organized by co-curators Giovanna Zamboni Paulis, independent curator of contemporary Italian art, and Randi Malkin Steinberger, a photographer and independent scholar.

The “book-art object” offers a highly varied medium through which one can see the full range of imagery, language and material embraced by its creator. In many instances, the pieces do not conform to the traditional book structure, or paradoxically, to any accepted standard for art objects. Libro/Oggetto shares work from a variety of movements such as Conceptualism, Arte Povera, and the Transavanguardia, and includes work by such artists as Mirella Bentivoglio, Francesco Clemente, Jannis Kounellis, Bruno Munari, Maurizio Nannucci and Michelangelo Pistoletto among others.

Giovanna Zamboni Paulis and Randi Malkin Steinberger