Riccardo Giacconi

Riccardo Giacconi, Due, still from 16mm film, 2017.

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Riccardo Giacconi will use his fellowship at Künstlerhaus Büchsenhausen to develop a long-term research project about the relations between urban planning and media power, taking recent Italian history as a case study. In particular, he will continue an investigation about the urban area of Milano 2 that he started in 2017 with his film Due [Two].

Milano 2 is a residential area on the outskirts of Milan, built as a new utopian town by Italian media tycoon and ex-prime minister Silvio Berlusconi between 1970 and 1979. Milano 2 heralded the utopia of a small world awayfrom the city.It was addressed to the emerging upper middle classwho wanted an escape from the Italian political turmoil of the seventies. A citadel for the rich, safe and quiet, with all the comforts, separated from public space.

Distinctive landmarks today are sport facilities, a children’s playground and a small artificial lake. The only restaurant closes at 10.30 pm. There are no theatres, cinemas, museums, bars or nightclubs. Milan, which is close enough to have (almost) the same name, seems far away, especially at night.

Milano 2 became the headquarters of the first Italian private television channel, TeleMilano – a small cable network that started broadcasting in the area in 1974. Later it evolved into Canale 5, the first national private TV station and the bridgehead of Berlusconi’s media (andthen political) empire. The neighbourhood acted as a laboratory for the experiment: through the medium of television, the “new way of life”, tested in Milano 2, spread nationally, leaving a long-lasting mark on Italian culture in the subsequent decades, the so-called “Berlusconismo”.

Riccardo Giacconi’s work at Künstlerhaus Büchsenhausen will take these facts and circumstances as the main starting point for the development of a film and a publication, which will be conceived both as a detective story and study about a specific architecture.

Text source: Riccardo Giacconi

Riccardo GIACCONI studied fine arts at the University IUAV of Venice. His work has been exhibited in various institutions, such as ar/ge kunst (Bolzano), MAC (Belfast), WUK Kunsthalle Exnergasse (Vienna), FRAC Champagne-Ardenne (Reims), tranzitdisplay (Prague), MAXXI (Rome), Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo (Turin) and at the 6th Moscow International Biennale for Young Art. He was artist-in-residence at the Centre international d’art et du paysage (Vassivière, France), lugar a dudas (Cali, Colombia), MACRO Museum of Contemporary Art of Rome and La Box (Bourges). He has presented his films at several festivals, including the New York Film Festival, Venice International Film Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Visions du Réel and FID Marseille, where he won the Grand Prix of the international competition in 2015. In 2007 he co-founded the collective Blauer Hase, with which he curates the periodical publication Paesaggio and the Helicotrema festival.