Avellino, 1956

Biography and main exhibitions

Born in Avellino in 1956, in 1976 he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome, where he graduated in 1980.  Painter, sculptor, engraver, video maker. He made his debut exhibiting at the collective exhibition Grandi Ombre at Studio Artra in Milan in 1983. His first solo shows were held the following year at the Galerie Tanit in Munich and the Galerie Buchmann in Basel. His exhibition activity continues with numerous personal exhibitions, especially in the German area. Among the first exhibitions in Italy are the two solo shows held in Modena in 1990 and 1991. In 1994 and 1996 he exhibited at the Otto Gallery in Bologna. The artist’s painting, sculpture and graphic production are characterized by a strong ancestral connotation in which colors define the relationship between past and present. At the beginning of the 1980s, the Terra Mia cycle was born, dominated by dark and dramatic atmospheres, which draw a line of discontinuity with respect to the chromatic vivacity of the fellow exponents of the Transavantgarde. With this new cycle of works, he took part in the collective exhibition Perspective at Art Basel, Basel. This was followed by solo shows at the Tanit Gallery in Munich and at the Buchmann Gallery in Basel, and by the group show Nuovi Argomenti at the PAC in Milan. In the same years he exhibited in solo shows at the Janine Mautsch Gallery in Cologne; Harald Behm in Hamburg; Klaus Lupke in Frankfurt. He began his sculptures entitled Montagne Sante (Holy Mountains). He, then, had new solo exhibitions at Villa Waldberta, Galerie Tanit, Munich, as a guest of the City, at the Galleria Engström in Stockholm, at Studio Guenzani in Milan and took part in the XI Quadriennale in Rome; Prospect ’86 at the Kunstverein und Shirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt; Dopo il conceptuale at the Museo Provinciale d’Arte in Trento and at the Galerie Pierre Huber, Geneva. In 1987 he exhibited at the PAC in Milan, at the Museum der Stadt in Esslingen, at the Galerie Maeght-Lelong, Paris and at the Edward Totah Gallery, London, where Arcangelo opened his own London studio. Towards the end of the 1980s the Altari sculptures were created and between 1989 and 1990 the pictorial cycle of the Planets began. 1990, after a trip to Africa, the works of the Lobi-Dogon cycle were created and exhibited at the Kunstverein in Bonn in 1991.
In 1992 he inaugurated a solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in Toulouse, in the Réfectoir des Jacobins. In 1993 he exhibited at the Contemporary Art Centre La Ferme du Buisson in Marne-La-Vallée; at the Municipal Gallery of Contemporary Art in St. Priest; at the Kodama Gallery in Osaka, Japan. In 1994 he exhibited the works of the Stanze cycle at the OTTO Gallery in Bologna and was again at Tanit in Munich and then at Alice Pauli in Lausanne. Between 1993 and 1994 he exhibited in Japan, at the Fukuyama Museum of Art and in France, at the new Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Toulouse Les Abattoirs. In 1995-1996 he organized two editions of Leonkart at the C.S.O.A. Leonkavallo in Milan, inviting artists such as Ricardo Brey, Pierpaolo Calzolari, Michele Frere, George Lappas, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Jaume Plensa to exhibit. In 1996, at the Galleria Di Meo in Paris and at the Galleria Gentili in Florence, he presented the cycle of wax sculptures Le Navi, then at the Galleria Continua in San Giminiano.


During the summer the pictorial series of Mysteries was born. Between 1996 and 1998 he exhibited again at the Tanit Gallery in Munich, at the OTTO Gallery in Bologna, at the Janine Mautsch in Cologne, at the Bernard Cats Gallery in Brussels and at the Civica Raccolta del Disegno in Salò he dedicated a personal exhibition to him. He also took part in the exhibition Ultime Generazioni, XII Quadriennale Nazionale d’Arte, Rome. In the same year Arcangelo began his small cycle of erotic works entitled Verso Oriente (Towards the East) and then exhibited his terracotta amphorae in the prestigious rooms of Caffè Florian in Venice. In 2000 he inaugurated Tappeti Persiani, sarcophagus, amphorae and his first solo exhibition at the Galleria Lorenzelli Arte in Milan. In 2001 he created the Feticci and Sanniti cycles, he also created the Orti, ceramic sculptures made at the Bottega Gatti in Faenza, and exhibited the works of hunting trophies at the Galleria Tanit in Munich. In 2003 he published his first monograph Arcangelo (Edizioni Quattroemme, Perugia) and subsequently designed a series of Monotypes, exhibited in Italy and Germany. In 2004 he exhibited again at Lorenzelli Arte, Milan, with his solo show Lunga notte di stelle Sannite and realized the project Terra dei Sanniti in the spaces of the Fondazione Il Volume di Roma. At the same time he printed a precious volume of engravings accompanied by 14 poems by Alda Merini (Edizioni Lo Sciamano). In 2005 the works Le mie case were born and in 2006 the new cycle entitled I Vedenti (The Sighted) was born, which he exhibited at the Kaj Forsblom Gallery in Helsinki. He then participated in the exhibition For example, Italian Contemporary Art from the Unicredit Collection, at the MART in Rovereto and published the second volume of the monograph Arcangelo – works from 1983/2007 (Damiani Editore, Bologna). The interest in black Africa returns in 2007 with the works of the cycle Kenya-Masai. In 2009 he inaugurated solo shows in the Marcorossi artecontemporanea galleries in Verona and Pietrasanta. In the same year he created papers and canvases dedicated to the tribal world of Segoú, which in 2010 he exhibited at the Fondazione Il Volume in Rome, at Lorenzelli Arte in Milan and at the OTTO Gallery in Bologna. In 2011 he inaugurated a solo exhibition in the Church of the Immaculate at the Aragonese Castle in Ischia. The following year he created a group of works entitled Beirut, which he exhibited at L’Espace Kettaneh-Kunigk (Tanit) in Beirut, Lebanon. In the summer of 2012 he worked on a nucleus of intimate works Ex voto, followed by the erotic works of the Kamasutra cycle and in the summer of 2014 he worked on works dedicated to the Irpini, an ancient people adjacent to the Samnites. In 2013 he held his solo exhibition Da Terra mia. Works on paper 1983-2012, at the Marcorossi artecontemporanea in Milan and Verona, followed by the exhibition Disegno 1983-2014, at the OTTO Gallery in Bologna. In 2014 he began the series of ceramic works entitled Case degli Irpini, made at the laboratory Le Officine Saffi in Milan and exhibited in the gallery of the same name in 2015, in the exhibition Fare corpo, fare luogo. In the same year he also held solo exhibitions at the Galleria Francesco Clivio, Milan; Galleria PoliArt Contemporary, Rovereto; Marcorossi artecontemporanea, Pietrasanta. Also in 2015 he participated in the collective Passaggi al Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain Saint-Étienne Métropole, Saint-Étienne in France and the Fondazione Volume!, Rome. In the same year he won the 56th International Bugatti-Segantini Prize for Lifetime Achievement, and dedicated a solo exhibition to him at the historic complex of Villa Brivio and Villa Vertua in Nova Milanese. In 2017 he exhibited his solo exhibition “Via Appia” at the Clivio Gallery.

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