“La luce della mente – un’insegna urbana” by Federica Marangoni

As part of the Bookcity Milano 2023 schedule, Palazzo Reale features the multimedia sculpture “Light of the Mind–an urban billboard “by the artist Federica Marangoni. The light-based installation, produced by Palazzo Reale and promoted by the Comune di Milano–Cultura as a site-specific work for the Palace’s cour d’honneur, will be on view from15 November to 10 December 2023.

Multimedia artist, known for her innovative use of glass, light and video in her works and installations, Federica Marangoni (Venice, 1940) has been a pioneer in the search for new materials, through the innovative use of emerging technologies. In the 1970s and 80s she was a performer, producing works that explored concepts like light, artistry, the ephemeral, transparency, and virtual image mobility, while breaking away from the traditional concepts of sculpture. Glass is a mainstay of her work, which includes a constant interaction with Murano glassmakers. The work titled Light of the Mind–an urban billboard, a large-scale evolution of Federica Marangoni’s cycle of works on the theme of the book, language, and memory, is made from weathering iron, permanently moving cracked neon blue, and blue Murano glass scrap. The pivot of the installation is a Light book sculpture, half-open and trapped in a cage. Words in neon escape from the cage, as upward harbingers of a new vital energy, freed from constraint.

The impressive volume emerges from a luminous heap of blue glass scrap, as if animating the light of the words. The work embodies key themes of our lives, such as reading and communication. The message of words linked to the drama of humanity-a leitmotif of Federica Marangoni’s oeuvre-is expressed here as a pulsating urban billboard, where the monumental book and its open pages reflect the spirit of our existence. As the memory and evidence of learning and true symbol of the human mind, this book rusted by time seems to bring words out of its ancient pages to enlighten the minds and catch the eye of passers-by as they pause to grasp their meaning. An installation of light, it beckons to people through its familiar form as an urban hoarding.

“Federica Marangoni, who has already created public works for Spain, in Seville, Tenerife and Barcelona, and installed The Tree of Life in New York, continues to spread artistic messages through squares and streets to defend the values of ethics and aesthetics and the vitality of a project for a livable world.” Comments Viana Conti, journalist and art-critic, artist’s lifelong curator. The work was produced thanks to support from Assicurazioni Generali and its commitment to the promotion of art and culture throughout Italy thanks to Valore Cultura. Generali recognizes immense value in the Italian cultural and artistic heritage, both as a founding element of the country’s identity and for innovation and as an engine that generates emotions capable of uniting people. With Valore Cultura the Group is committed to protecting these emotions with actions aimed at supporting art and culture to make them accessible to an increasingly wider audience and to enhance the territory.


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