“Readings” is an evolution, in the form of podcasts, of the editorial activity of Fondazione Prada, a sound anthology composed of critical essays and narrative texts commissioned by the foundation as part of its multidisciplinary projects.
“Readings” brings together a wide selection of excerpts from books published from 2012 to date. The first collection, destined to grow, includes more than 50 podcasts by historians, philosophers, curators and writers such as Nicolas Bourriaud, Massimo Cacciari, Germano Celant, Christoph Cox, Emilio Gentile, Alison Gingeras, Boris Groys, Udo Kittelmann, Rachel Kuschner, Christy Lange, Roxana Marcoci, Julia Robinson, Dieter Roelstraete, Jeffrey Schnapp, Salvatore Settis, Ali Smith, Lynn Spigel, and many others.
Podcasts are both in English and Italian.
The publications of Fondazione Prada are available in our online bookshop
1. Boris Groys
Art Topology: The Reproduction of Aura
The essay is part of the catalogue dedicated to the exhibition “When Attitudes Become Form: Bern 1969/Venice 2013“, curated by Germano Celant in dialogue with Thomas Demand and Rem Koolhaas. Presented in 2013 in Fondazione Prada’s Venice venue, the project reconstructed “Live in Your Head. When Attitudes Become Form”, the exhibition conceived by Harald Szeemann at the Kunsthalle in Bern in 1969 and and remembered for the curator’s radical approach to exhibition practice.
2.Lynn B. Spigel
Talk TV and the video countercultures
The essay is included in the publication accompanying the exhibition “TV 70: Francesco Vezzoli guarda la Rai“. Presented in Milan in 2017 by Fondazione Prada in collaboration with Rai, the project is a personal interpretation of the TV production of the 70s in the form of an intense visual journey. Italian public television is considered by Vezzoli as an engine of cultural, social and political change in a country in transition from the radicalism of the 60s to the hedonism of the 80s. The project analysed in particular the relations between media production and art, politics, women’s emancipation and entertainment.
The essay is included in the book that accompanied the exhibition “Post Zang Tumb Tuuum. Art Life Politics: Italia 1918-1943”. Conceived by Germano Celant in 2018, the project installed in all the exhibition spaces of Fondazione Prada’s Milan venue explored the system of art and culture in Italy between the two world wars. The study of thousands of historical documents and photographs revealed the spatial, social and political context in which the artworks were created, staged, experienced and interpreted by the public over 25 crucial years of Italian history. The survey led to the selection of over 600 works, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, posters, furnishings, architectural projects and models, created by more than 100 authors including artists Giacomo Balla, Carlo Carrà, Felice Casorati, Giorgio de Chirico, Fortunato Depero, Filippo de Pisis, Arturo Martini, Fausto Melotti, Giorgio Morandi, Gino Severini, Mario Sironi, and Adolfo Wildt and the architects and designers Giovanni Muzio, Marcello Piacentini, Piero Portaluppi and Giuseppe Terragni.
4. Elvira Dyangani Ose
Betye Saar: Uneasy Dancer
“Uneasy Dancer” is an expression Betye Saar has used to define both herself and her work. Several key elements lie at the center of her artistic practice: an interest in the metaphysical, the representation of feminine memory, and African-American identity which, in her work, takes on evocative and unusual forms. Through her confident usage of found objects, personal memorabilia and derogatory images that evoke denied or distorted narratives, Saar developed a powerful social critique that challenges racial and sexist stereotypes deeply rooted in American culture. The essay is part of the publication accompanying the exhibition “Uneasy Dancer” a comprehensive survey of work by Betye Saar (born in Los Angeles in 1926), held at the Fondazione Prada in Milan in 2016, curated by Elvira Dyangani Ose. This was the first exhibition of the American artist in Italy, and brought together over 80 works including installations, assemblages, collages and sculptures produced between 1966 and 2016.
5. Roxana Marcoci
Movies, Sculptural Theaters, and Roller Coasters
The essay is part of the publication accompanying the exhibition “Lizzie Fitch and Ryan Trecartin: Whether Line”. Presented at Fondazione Prada in Milan in 2019, the exhibition was the first output of a creative process begun in late 2016, investigating the perpetual promise of “new” terrain and the inherent instability of territorial appropriation.
Taking the idealized rurality endemic to back-to-the-land ideologies as a conceptual starting point, the project represents both a return and an escape. Relocating their studio operations to the countryside of Ohio for this work, Fitch and Trecartin conceived the framework for a new movie as a haunted map: a location with its own will and a constellation of permanent built. The artists contort these sites through dislocations of time and memory to explore the notion of borders and boundaries—existential, psychosocial, and physical.