A piece by the renowned Italian artist Pino Castagna, Canneto is bushes of bamboo made of Murano glass. Bamboo, in many oriental cultures, symbolises purity and virtue. The incomparable straightness of the bamboo, the perfection of its impetus towards the sky, and the knots between the hollow parts are laden with meanings. The sound of bamboo leaves moving in the wind, to certain masters, is associated with enlightenment. Italian craftsmanship embodying Chinese spirit may remind us of Marco Polo’s travel to China hundreds of years ago.
An accredited installation of BODW City Programme.
Pino Castagna was born in Castelgomberto, in the province of Vicenza, Italia, in 1932.
He completed his academic studies in Verona and Venice. Over the years, he acquired and improved the various skills and his knowledge of working with materials like ceramic, glass, marble, wood, bronze, aluminium, cast iron, cement and steel. His artistic research, in fact, is characterized by his experimentation in the use of the medium, and by continually going beyond the extreme limits of the resistance of the materials. He creates imposing works that are often placed in spectacular natural spaces, creating a continual dialogue-exchange with the surrounding space.
Castagna’s models are Brancusi, Derain, Modigliani, Wotruba and Guerrini for their anti-classicism. The artist’s sculptures are obvious transpositions of a subjective idea completely in tune with the environment in which they are placed.
The artist’s most important one-man shows have found, moreover, their ideal, open-air locations in the main historical centres of cities in Italy and Europe. With his retrospective at Trento’s Palazzo delle Albere and the survey exhibition in the rooms of Mantova’s Palazzo Té in 1985, Castagna’s importance in the international art world was recognized. His success was confirmed the following year with his participation in the 42nd Venice Biennial, with the memorable cast iron installation of Sails (1981) on the bank of the basin of San Marco.
The architectonic and environmental ambition of Castagna’s sculptures is revealed in a series of urban-scale initiatives including Cascade (1991-1992), a work placed in the countryside along a French motorway near Lyons; the open-air church in the courtyard in front of the Parish Church of Zermeghedo (1994); Monadi, a steel and cement sculpture intended for the Villa Glori sculpture park in Rome; the glass Reed, acquired by the Chamber of Deputies, now part of Montecitorio’s contemporary art collection (2001); the Venetian Block, a sculpture made of Murano glass and steel, about 10 meters tall that rises in the Center of the Rotonda Maria Rosa Molas in Castellón de la Plana, Spain (2002).