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ALIGHIERO BOETTI

Born in 1940 in Turin, Italy; died in 1994 in Rome, Italy.

Boetti is a self-taught artist. After the debut at the Christian Stein Gallery of Turin (1967), he participated in important exhibitions of Arte Povera curated by Germano Celant. In 1971, Boetti traveled to Afghanistan for the first time where he commissioned local women to accomplish embroidery works according to their local tradition. The Mappe series (1971 – 1972), a political map of the world in which each territory is embroidered with the colours of the flag and symbols of the belonging country, are the turning point of his work. He returns to Rome and changes his name to Alighiero & Boetti, questioning the identity of the artist. Boetti had his first American solo exhibition in New York at John Weber Gallery in 1973. In 1978, he held an anthological exhibition curated by Jean-Christophe Ammann at the Kunsthalle Basel. In the 1980s and 1990s, he had numerous exhibitions in Italy, Europe and the United States. In 1992, he had a retrospective  exhibition that traveled to Bonn and Münster, Germany, and Lucerne, Switzerland. Boetti participated in Documenta 5 and 7 (1972, 1982) and Venice Biennale (1978, 1980, 1986, 1990, 1995, 2001). He received the Special Jury Prize in 1990. He is honoured posthumously with several large-scale exhibitions, most notably at the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Rome (1996); the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Vienna in 1997; the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt am Main in 1998; Whitechapel Gallery, London (1999); Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz; MOMA, New York (2012).

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