Italian Ambassador Giorgio Guglielmino has been an avid art collector and appreciator for decades even as he continues his duty as a diplomat to the Philippines since 2017.
His love for art knows no bounds, having written several books on contemporary art, two of which were published in English. In his latest book, The Originals: 30 artists that shaped contemporary art, he explains art in the context of its contemporary iteration and how it pushes the thought of originality.
What is art? For most people, it’s the ability to draw highly realistic images of nature, humans, or the like. The definition can be slightly stretched to include cartoons or things that people can, at first glance, understand. But modern art has broken these boundaries and has admittedly caused a lot of confusion as to what art is, and also if art can ever truly be original. After all, if several people draw the same landscape or have the same idea, can the art form truly be considered unique?
For Guglielmino, there is nothing more extraordinary than art. It is not always the traditional definition of art — the defined lines, the realism of everything — that moves him, but rather its ability to profoundly af-fect people. Art encapsulates beauty, though its method in doing so may differ from what society dictates. This is what Guglielmino explains in his new book.
The book, published under Anvil Publishing, reintroduces artists of different nationalities of various ages and generations, who have paved the way towards new and modern art and have essentially given birth to what contemporary art is today. In it, Guglielmino gives a detailed look at the artworks of Richard Long, On Kawara, Jannis Kounellis, Aligheiro Boetti, Mimmo Paladino, Jenny Holzer, Cindy Sherman, Julian Schna-bel, Joseph Beuys, Ilya Kabakov, Tony Cragg, Barbara Krueger, Rosemarie Trockel, Anish Kapoor, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Guillermo Kuitca, Gabriel Orozco, Gerhard Richter, Tracey Emin, Anselm Kiefer, Ernesto Neto, Christian Marclay, David Hockney, Tino Seghal, Anya Gallacio, Shahzia Sikander, Eisa Jocson, Cai Guo-Qiang, William Kentridge, and Maria Justu.
The book also includes snippets of conversation with art collector Marcel Crespo.
By examining these 30 artists, Guglielmi-no hopes to inspire young Filipino artists to grasp the true meaning of art and establish their own creative style.
The Originals: 30 artists that shaped contem-porary art is available for P650 at Art Bar branches and online through www.anvilpublishing.com and www.nationalbookstore.com.