Leaves of stone decorate the Italian capital

Art May 29, 2017 14:00

By The Nation

Fendi pays homage to Rome with a permanent public contemporary art installation entitled “Foglie di pietra” by celebrated sculptor Giuseppe Penone opposite Palazzo Fendi.

After the majestic restoration of the Trevi Fountain and of other five fountains, and following the opening to the public of the first floor of its headquarters at Palazzo della Civilta Italiana, Fendi reaffirms once again its full commitment to the promotion of culture. 

 “The art of Giuseppe Penone creates a new dialogue between history, the contemporary and the future. It is a further sign of a city that works, in many of its components, to give everyone back the right to freely enjoy the art and the benefits of scientific progress,” says Luca Bergamo, deputy mayor of the City of Rome.

 The great sculpture “Foglie di pietra” (“Leaves of Stone”, 2016) is one of the Penone’s most complex artworks: two bronze trees – 18 and 9 metres tall respectively – interlace their branches, lifting 5 metres from the ground a sculpted marble block weighing 11 tonnes. Archaeology and ruins, history and biology are grafted one on the other and creating a permanent bond between nature and culture.

Installed in the architectural context of the city of Rome, the artwork activates a series of interpretations and associations between the various moments in the capital city’s history and recalls the illusionism and marvel of Baroque Rome. 

Intimately linked to the history of Rome, “Foglie di pietra” is also deeply ingrained in the present and future of the city. This piece is in fact the first work of contemporary art to be permanently installed in the public spaces of Rome and it is bound to become a symbol of the identity of a constantly changing city that never loses the bond with its historical roots.

 “We are extremely proud to donate this wonderful and incredible art piece by Giuseppe Penone to the city of Rome, its citizens and the million tourists who come visit the Eternal City every day. ‘Foglie di pietra’ embodies once again how tied we are to this city and the importance it carries in the history of Fendi. Penone is an Italian artist of international fame with whom we share the passion for creation, sublime savoir-faire and continuous dialogue between tradition and innovation,” Pietro Beccari, chairman and chief executive of Fendi said.