The excavated and hypogean architecture

contemporary artdesign e architettura
from mon 01 april 2019
to wed 15 may 2019
from h 17.00 to h 20.00
Fondazione SoutHeritage
Via San Potito, 7 Matera (MT)
Free - while seats last

Suitable for schools
Suitable for people from 16-30 years old
Suitable for people working in the sector
Suitable for adults


Until 25 May, in the  fascinating underground areas of Palazzo Viceconte (formerly Venusio) in Pino Settanni's Photography Museum, visitors can see Padiglioni Invisibili: Rehearsing the Subterranean.

The exhibition is designed as an immersion in the Earth's interior and matter, with a special display showing samples of ashlars of calcarenite that have been used for centuries in the urban dwellings of Rioni Sassi, a UNESCO world heritage site, in a dialogue with works by artists of different generations and cultural and stylistic backgrounds, such as Monica Bonvicini, Peter Fischli & David Weiss and Pierangelo Laterza. The exhibition aims to create a novel interaction between ancient matter and contemporary artistic experimentation, producing new potential images of 'subterranean'.
The SoutHeritage Foundation is a co-producer of the official programme for Matera 2019 European Capital of Culture, and during excavation work on the tunnel connecting the seven tanks in the subterranean area of Palazzo Viceconte, it supports two projects on two important elements of European cultural planning: promotion of ecosustainability and social responsibility in culture and art. 

With the aim of reducing the environmental impact of greenhouse gases produced through the implementation of the Padiglioni Invisibili project, which is bringing artists, researchers and experts to Matera from various cities in Italy and Europe, the SoutHeritage Foundation contributes to the project in progress of artist Gustav Metzger on RAF / Reduce Art Flights by asking participants to use less polluting means of transport, replacing air travel with journeys by sea or train.

In the same context, the SoutHeritage Foundation supports the project COLOR EARTH: Red Line - Yellow Line by the artist Angelo Caruso which runs between April and July 2019 over an area of 13,000 square metres in the urban spaces of Viale Monza in Milan and some green spaces in Rione Agna and the park of the Open Design School di Matera; the project will involve sowing poppy and sunflower seeds as a gesture of environmental compensation.

With regard to social responsibility in culture and art, the Foundation supports the project 'Ciak si critica!', created with the Department of Juvenile and Community Justice – E. Gianturco Penal Institute for Minors in Potenza, where a training course for the social and cultural integration of disadvantaged minors ran from 15 December 2018 to 28 February 2019. 

The objective of the Foundation's commitment is to facilitate access to contemporary art and culture for people who do not have the opportunity to experience them, such as young prisoners, through a training programme that provides basic language, practical and theoretical tools to see art as a means of development and experience, and sharing visual materials developed and produced on the themes of the Padiglioni Invisibili project. 

The exhibition will present the results of this training course, which focuses mainly on the concept of a closed, limited and measured space that characterises the subterranean spaces at the centre of Padiglioni Invisibili and the prison environment, by connecting the spatial dimension of prison cells with excavated environments in a metatemporal synchronicity.

These exhibitions are included in the programme of the Padiglioni Invisibili project, which is dedicated to one of the main themes of the application dossier of Matera as European Capital of Culture: excavated and subterranean architecture, the visual and spatial element that made the city of Matera a UNESCO world heritage site. The project develops around the regeneration of part of the ancient subterranean system for water collection, consisting of underground tanks dating back to the 15th century, which were common in the Mediterranean area, and which enabled Matera in 1993 to become a UNESCO world heritage site. The excavation of a tunnel that will connect seven of the underground tanks in the privately-owned Palazzo Viceconte wil make them accessible and usable for the first time by researchers, artists, experts and the general public. 

Padiglioni Invisibili focuses on the responsibility of artistic and aesthetic research and of architecture in implementation, enhancement and capitalization of cultural heritage. Padiglioni Invisibili's programme responds to the need to observe, experiment and theorise about processes of design and production of imaginary significance of spaces and places, and of understanding the strategic, geocultural and geopolitical dynamics behind the creation, regeneration and re-use of spaces and places. 

The activities of the Padiglioni Invisibili project are the result of work by three interdisciplinary research groups and the scientific supervision of Philippe Nys, a philosopher and expert in the hermeneutics of space and landscape, Emeritus Perofessor at the University of Paris 8, and a researcher at the AMP – Architecture Milieu Paysage dell'École Nationale Supérieure d'Art Paris-La Villette.

The research groups consist of national and international academics, artists and experts from different disciplines, in particular art and aesthetics, architecture, cultural and political geography, philosophy and geophilosophy, biology and spatial engineering, rural sociology and social sciences, psychology of art and neurosciences. 

Padiglioni Invisibili is produced by the SoutHeritage Foundation, the project leader of the cultural programme 'Matera 2019 European Capital of Culture', directed by Angelo Bianco and Roberto Martino, designed and developed by Place Heritage Research Innovation Network (PHRIN), created and directed by Giusy Checola. PHRIN is a platform dedicated to interdisciplinary research, an experimentation laboratory and also an infrastructural legacy of Padiglioni Invisibli, thanks to collaboration with the national and international partners with which SoutHeritage coproduced the project: ENSA - École Nationale Supérieure d'Art di Bourges, France; Global Grand Central, Stockholm, Sweden; BAICR Cultura della Relazione e Human Ecosystem Relations, Rome, Italy.


From 10 to 13 am on Wednesday and Friday by reservation
The exhibition is suitable for students from 11 to 20 years old
Slots available: 30
Booking: passaporto@matera-basilicata2019.it

utopie e distopie

All events of the project Padiglioni Invisibili arrow_forward_ios

ARTISTS Place Heritage Research Innovation Network (PHRIN)
Philippe Nys
Monica Bonvicini
Pierangelo Laterza
Peter Fischli & David Weiss

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