The local artists of Todi are generous and supportive of Art Class Italy.
On our recent trip to Todi to run classes we visited the Paula Biganti Home Gallery, Ugo Levita’s new gallery, met with Roberto Bernadi and visited Silvia Rancchicio’s Gallery and Studio, and Rita Mirandi’s Gallery and Studio. Chris also met New Zealand expat painter Nathan Byrne at his truffle hunting expedition.
All of these local artists have established their own small Galleries and studios in high streets around Todi and are very generously accessible with their time to visit their studios and talk about their art. That is also a feature of the townsfolk of Todi generally. They welcome tourists openly and warmly, particularly those who are interested in Italian culture in all its forms.
Contemporary Art history of Todi
In addition to its most famous internationally renowned expat artists, Bevely Pepper and Brian O'doherty the local art scene has and remains vibrant and pervasive. The diversity of style, media and scale of Todi artists is quite phenomenal. We discovered this when we attended the exhibition “Gli artists che Todi” (The artists who live in Todi) at the Palazzo del Vignola. This exhibition of over 50 Todi artists is housed in the former Palazzo beside the Cathedral just off the Piazza del Popolo in Todi.
The Palazzo del Vignola, is located in Todi in via del Seminario next to the Church of the Nunziatina. The building was purchased in 1712 by Bishop Filippo Antonio Gualtieri to transfer the archiepiscopal seat there. This impressive three story building was recently renovated and re-purposed as a gallery for Contemporary Art on the ground and first floors. The exhibition we saw included works by living and past local artists Todi, many of whom have or had international exhibitions and their works are held in international museums and private collections. All of them have a strong support base in Umbria and Italy generally. For a short video of some of the exhibition works go to www.umbriaecultura.it/mostre-artodi-grandi-artisti/
Irish artist and polymath Brian O’Doherty and American Sculptor Beverly Pepper are counted among them. Pepper lived in Todi from 1965 until her death in 2019. Piero Dorazio, Guiseppe Gallo, Piero Pizzi Cannella and Roberto Bernadi also have international reputations and they have fine examples of their work on exhibition.
Painting and sculpture works by Silvia Rancchichio, ceramics Rita Miranda and Luca Leandri are on exhibition and the ultra modern work of Roberto Bernardi stands out with hyper-real paintings and sculpture of oversized balancing macaroons in a room dedicated to him.
Altogether this exhibition was both inspiring and enlightening. Little wonder theat the organising Associazione Todi per l'Arte (ArTodi) called it “I grandi artists che hanno scelto Todi” (The artists who chose Todi).
Art Class Italy is fortunate to secure the teaching of local artist Roberto Steve Gobesso from 29 May to 2 June 2023. Steve is a local artist of “Extreme Eastern Calligraphy, graphic designer and photographer. Steve’s experience in this discipline is distinguished with participation in group exhibitions in Italy, Switzerland and South Korea.