The exhibition “Álvaro Siza. Viagem sem Programa” in the former Venetian Palazzo Querini, now the Fondazione Querini Stampalia, is the result of the many meetings the two curators – Greta Ruffino and Raul Betti – had with Álvaro Siza in his studio in Porto. The 53 works on show were developed from travel notes and sketches and were personally selected by the artist for the event. They narrate his work in architecture as well as his concept of life.
In addition to shedding light on Siza’s extraordinary eidetic memory, the exhibition underscores the power of the drawings (chiefly portraits) created during his youth, his many trips abroad for work purposes, recent dinner parties with friends and moments “free from the burden of work” populated with memoirs, views and ironical stances accumulated with the passing of time. They all contribute to giving form to his way of living and conceiving life.
The work (fifty-three 1/1 prints authenticated by the author that form a unique, previously unseen collection), shall be displayed in a sequential order. A succession of prospects, dreams, memories, and the faces of unknown persons and friends encountered in that extraordinary “Journey without a plan”, which is life itself.
The exhibition will also have a video projection area of the interview made in Portugal in August 2011 where Álvaro Siza talks about his personal involvement with design, his childhood, the beginning of his career, his most important encounters and closest friendships, as well as a glimpse into amazing new projects.
On the ground floor of the sixteenth century palace which is furnished with eighteenth century and neoclassical furniture, porcelain, bisques, sculptures, globes and over four hundred paintings, primarily from the Veneto school, dating from the fourteenth to the twentieth centuries, Murano chandeliers and mirrors and fabrics, lies the area restored by Carlo Scarpa in 1963; The Eighties and Nineties witnessed the interventions of Valeriano Pastor, followed at the start of the new century by those of Mario Botta to whom was entrusted the project of the complete renewal of the structure.