Florence, Tomás Saraceno's large suspended spheres arrive at Palazzo Strozzi

Unveiled in Florence is Tomás Saraceno’s installation Thermodynamic Constellation, which from Feb. 22 to July 19 will welcome visitors to the courtyard of Palazzo Strozzi on the occasion of Aria, the Argentine artist’s major exhibition (a show featuring immersive works and participatory experiences intended to invite the public to change their point of view on reality and connect with non-human phenomena and elements that become the protagonists of his installations and metaphors for our perception of the Cosmos).

Thermodynamic Constellation, promoted and realized by Fondazione CR Firenze, aims to be a metaphor for a new era of solidarity between man and the environment, expressed by “Aerocene,” an interdisciplinary artistic community initiated by the artist himself. The work consists of three large suspended spheres, made of transparent and mirrored foils, and stems from Saraceno’s experimentation with real hot air balloons capable of flying thanks to solar energy alone. These are aerosolar balloons capable of long-distance flights at heights between 20 and 40 kilometers, floating around the world free of borders and fossil fuels. Thermodynamic Constellation thus wants to address an invitation to poetically and collectively rethink how we inhabit the world, transforming the courtyard of Palazzo di Strozzi into a physical and philosophical platform to propose a paradigm shift through an original dialogue between Renaissance and contemporary: from man at the center of the world to man as part of a universe in which to seek a new harmony.

The work is then intended to be a starting point for a reflection on the themes of sustainability and the relationship between art and science, which are fundamental in Tomás Saraceno’s work, and are also developed with Fondazione CR Firenze in a wide-ranging project of activities aimed in particular at schools and young people. In fact, a series of free activities are planned for Tuscan high school children, including workshops on the relationship between art and sustainability carried out directly in schools and meetings at Palazzo Strozzi with experts on environmental issues on topics such as climate change, food and water use. Also planned are a series of events at Palazzo Strozzi such as Strozzi Night, the special evening dedicated to young people, and the Constellation Sound concerts in collaboration with Tempo Reale. Finally, a series of lectures curated by Professor Marco Bindi of the University of Florence and CNR will be promoted to schools and the general public with the presence in the city of leading international and national scholars of climate change issues.

“The Fondazione CR Firenze,” says President Luigi Salvadori, “in addition to its usual contribution to Palazzo Strozzi for its institutional activities, also wanted to support the production of a new major work by Saraceno and a program of activities aimed at fostering an understanding of the themes of the exhibition in High School children between the ages of 15 and 19. The occasion also aims to stimulate reflection on the relationship between man and the environment, which is even more urgent and necessary today. Art thus becomes a stimulus for the critical consciousness of individuals and allows us to stop our attention on some important aspects of the time in which we live: from those that affect our daily lives to the major issues of global debate such as the protection of natural resources and the ecosystem. Issues related to climate change and the eco-sustainability of human activities constitute the greatest challenge that humanity and new generations will be called upon to face in the coming years. The Foundation wants to play a leading role in this process and will support a series of cross-sectoral projects with the aim of fostering greater awareness and knowledge of these issues.”

“Saraceno’s work,” stresses Arturo Galansino, director general of the Fondazione Palazzo Strozzi, “speaks to us about important and current issues in a powerful and direct way, restoring to art a strong manifesto role to invite us to reflect on the problems and challenges characteristic of our era, which have become increasingly urgent, such as pollution, climate change, sustainability, and the overcoming of geographical and social barriers. With the work Thermodynamic Constellation in the Courtyard of Palazzo Strozzi, Tomás Saraceno invites us to reflect in a new and imaginative way on man’s ability to go beyond established limits and boundaries in the name of a new attunement with the Planet. I thank the Fondazione CR Firenze for supporting this project, which aims in particular to stimulate the active and participatory involvement of young people, who are increasingly conscious protagonists of the new challenges of our contemporary reality.”

Pictured: Tomás Saraceno, Thermodynamic Constellation

Florence, Tomás Saraceno's large suspended spheres arrive at Palazzo Strozzi
Florence, Tomás Saraceno's large suspended spheres arrive at Palazzo Strozzi

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