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Radicalia - Piero Martinello Exhibition at Campbell House



Radicalia - Piero Martinello Exhibition at Campbell House

Piero Martinello travelled across his home country of Italy in search of “outsider” men and women who embrace radical choices. The resulting project, Radicalia, comprises five sections that each connote a different kind of radical—including nuns, criminals, ravers, saints, and town fools—captured through portraits in a range of photographic formats, including vernacular images and those he has taken himself. For the Toronto iteration of his project, Martinello has worked with the historical context of Campbell House, interspersing the photographs among its period decor. His intervention introduces a most unlikely gathering of characters into a domestic space that, in reality, none of them would ever otherwise enter.

Each of the themes, or “chapters,” in Radicalia focuses on a different group of individuals captured in distinct modes of documentation. These various forms of individual existence, encompassing a wide range of contemporary and historical lives, come together under an unexpected collective umbrella in Radicalia. Here, criminals, eccentrics, and religious devotees are united in their shared expressions of embraced difference and “outsider” status. For his installations, Martinello places the portraits in ornate antique frames; in the Campbell House intervention, he has mounted them on walls in multiple rooms throughout the former home, particularly those designated for guests—the sitting room, dining room, and ballroom—replacing the period prints and portraits that would normally occupy its walls.



Campbell House

The original owners of Campbell House, Chief Justice William Campbell and his wife, Hannah, focused the structure’s design around comfort and entertaining. Today, the museum house continues to be used as a meeting place and a space for socializing. Constructed using classical Greek and Roman style emphasizing symmetry and proportion, the building reflects a highly ordered, traditional style at odds with Martinello’s subject matter, which emphasizes uniqueness and eccentricity. His characters offer an entry point for considering a different trajectory of history that emphasizes individual expression and the resistance of societal norms. Each person portrayed here is motivated by their own method of intense devotion— whether to an emotion, religion, or any number of beliefs that drive their distinct purposes. Martinello’s series blends the sacred and profane, and all manner of unique lives in between, to speak out against homogeneity.

Organized by CONTACT in partnership with Campbell House Museum

Supported by the Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Toronto

Curated by Bonnie Rubenstein


Date: Da Tuesday, May 01, 2018 a Sunday, June 17, 2018

Time: From 6:00 pm To 9:00 pm

Organized by : CONTACT

In collaboration with : Istituto Italiano di Cultura and Campbell House Museum

Entrance : With fee


Campbell House Museum | 160 Queen St West. Toronto