Italian Excellence and Art: JCU Welcomes MACRO Director Luca Lo Pinto

On March 25, 2021, JCU Marketing Professor Antonella Salvatore welcomed Luca Lo Pinto, Director at MACRO (Museum of Contemporary Art of Rome), to her course “Made in Italy: the Italian Business Environment.”

Lo Pinto was appointed Director of MACRO in January 2020, only a few months before the outburst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Luca Lo Pinto

Luca Lo Pinto

The museum, which was formerly a Birra Peroni brewery, has a very complex architecture and underwent building renovations, as well as a 2004 expansion, designed by French architect Odile Decq. The museum is a dynamic environment made of several exhibition rooms, a foyer and a terrace, all connected by a complex system of staircases and elevators. Lo Pinto’s challenge was to create a uniform and coherent space. For this reason, in 2020, MACRO presented an exhibition project titled “Museum for Preventive Imagination,” which will be showcased until the end of 2022. The main idea behind this exhibition is to turn the museum itself into a dynamic and interdisciplinary space, in juxtaposition with the “static,” traditional idea of museums.

Lo Pinto said that contemporary art museums need to shift fluidly between the digital and physical realm, depending on the content they want to show. According to Lo Pinto, this idea is conveyed through MACRO’s new octopus logo. He said that, like an octopus, the museum has a central body with tentacles that move fluidly between digital and physical media.

The Covid-19 pandemic prompted museums to adapt to the “new normal.” As Lo Pinto explained, during the March 2020 lockdown, visitors could not access museum facilities. Despite the challenging situation, in order to reach a wide audience, Lo Pinto organized an exhibition displayed in the sky titled “TRACCE/TRACES,” created by conceptual artist Lawrence Weiner. From August 16 to August 25, 2020, airplanes flew in the sky along the Roman coast, from Ladispoli to Anzio, with a series of ten banners, displaying ten different words in English and Italian. Also, the way MACRO communicates with the audience has become different: their newsletters are not written in third person, but in first person, as if there were a direct dialogue between the museum and its visitors.

With this project, Lo Pinto aims at reaching a wider younger audience for MACRO.

(Giorgia Tamburi)