Moataz Nasr’s contemporary art, in Tuscany

Contemporary art could be and should be an international language and a common experience to make different sensibilities and cultures meet and mix. This is the idea and the spirit inspiring the exhibition A bridge between Pisa and Santa Croce sull’Arno dedicated to Moataz Nasr, one of the most renowned Arab artists on the international contemporary art scene.
[Khayameya, 2012. GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin. Photo by: Oak Taylor-Smith.]
[Khayameya, 2012. GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin. Photo by: Oak Taylor-Smith.]
The exhibition takes place in both Pisa and Santa Croce sull’Arno and it’s meant to be a bridge between cities, countries and cultures. Pisa has had a long historical presence of the Islam world, as testified by monuments and artworks that are still part of the town cultural heritage, like the Cathedral and its decorations. Santa Croce sull’Arno, on the other side, is a symbolic place of the complex relationships between different people from far-flung parts of the world and an intricate social reality (immigrants account for about 21% of its inhabitants). Moaztaz Nasr, an artist with an international vision and culture, has been invited to portray this territory, unknown for him: the people, knowledge, urban fabric, industrial tradition. The exhibition focus is the interaction of the artist with the two different urban realities, Pisa and Santa Croce sull’Arno.
[Dome, 2011. Courtesy: GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin. Photo by: Leif Gabrielsen]
[Dome, 2011. Courtesy: GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin. Photo by: Leif Gabrielsen]
  In Pisa, at the Centro Espositivo SMS San Michele degli Scalzi, Moataz Nasr has conceived a special project entitled Harmonia that takes inspiration from the Vespa, the famous scooter invented in the Pisan area in 1946 and one of the world’s foremost examples of industrial design. For Nasr, the Vespa becomes the “vehicle” for a regional and national identity. The second part of the exhibition, THE journey of a Griffin, in Santa Croce sull’Arno – at Villa Pacchiani – is the result of nine months of interactions, fact-finding visits and encounters between the artist and the territory and its peculiarity as an industrial area: the leather industry here employs many immigrants who have come to Santa Croce over the years and now form a sizeable community made up of people from many different areas of the world, living together in the city, at times not without difficulties, practising different religions and expressing social imaginaries of wholly different origins. The exhibition is part of the art project Toscanaincontemporanea 2012.
[Fiat Nasr, 2006. Courtesy: GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin]
[Fiat Nasr, 2006. Courtesy: GALLERIA CONTINUA, San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin]
  INFORMATION Moataz Nasr. A bridge between Pisa and Santa Croce sull’Arno. December 7, 2013 – February 9, 2014 Harmonia Centro Espositivo SMS San Michele degli Scalzi, Viale delle Piagge, Pisa Opening time: from Tuesday to Friday 4-7pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am-7pm; closed on December 24 and 26, January 1. Free admission THE journey of a Griffin Villa Pacchiani, Piazza Pier Paolo Pasolini, Santa Croce sull’Arno Opening time: from Friday to Sunday 4-8pm; closed on December 24 and 26, January 1. Free admission www.villapacchiani.wordpress.com