MARIA LAI | la leggenda di maria pietra
june 6th, 1991 – 7pm
tuesday to saturday, 4-8pm
MARIA LAI was born in 1919 in Ulassai (Nuoro, Sardinia). After studying under Arturo Martini at the Venice Academy of Fine Art, her artistic output has touched on a number of different fields: from land-art projects, book–objects, geographical maps, and cement and terracotta sculptures.
Since 1985 she has been involved in theatre projects that aims to recover popular folk mythology. Her images are designed to encourage personal and collective involvement, seeking a more direct relationship between work and performer.
She has made two theatre pieces in 1991: Il Viaggiatore Astrale (The Traveller to the Stars) and La pietra e la parola (The Word and the Stone), the latter inspired by a fable written by Giuseppe Dessi, accompanied by readings of Lamberto Pignotti’s poetry.
At the gallery the artist will present material related to an old popular folk tale, La Leggenda di Maria Pietra. The performance makes use of video and photography, along with stone and textile artworks, with improvised musical accompaniment by Giuseppe Scotese.
The performance–installation will take place on Thursday 6th June at 7pm.
Curated by Federica Di Castro
MARIA LAI was born in Ulassai, in the province of Nuoro, in 1919. After completing a teacher training diploma she moves to Rome in order to pursue her studies at art school; from 1943 to 1945 she works under the tutelage of Arturo Martini at the Venice Academy of Fine Arts. During the 1950s and 1960s – a period marked by a connection to literature that will prove fundamental, most notably with Salvatore Cambosu and Giuseppe Dessì, who introduce her to the world of folk legends and traditions – she primarily focuses on line drawing and the painting of subjects related to the world of Sardinia and begins working on bread sculptures. This experimentation with materials and techniques continues into the 1970s, culminating in the creation of looms, geographies and books, particularly memorable among which is the Libro scalpo (Scalped Book) presented in Venice in 1978. During the 1980s, as well as creating her most important geographies and cosmogonies, she dedicates herself to local-level action and performances in Sardinia; among these, along with the aforementioned Legarsi alla montagna, of particular note is the recovery of the Ulassai public bathhouse in 1988, made possible thanks to the involvement of Costantino Nivola, Guido Strazza and Luigi Veronesi.
For a more complete artist profile, see the artist page.
more exhibitions by MARIA LAI with STUDIO STEFANIA MISCETTI.