Pietro Terzini


14 DECEMBER, 2023 - 9 FEBRUARY, 2024


KROMYA ART GALLERY was founded in 2018 in Lugano by Tecla Riva, Giorgio Ferrarin and Adriano A. Sala as a result of a long-standing common passion and expertise. In 2020 KROMYA expanded its headquarters with a new outpost in Verona, Italy.

The KROMYA Art Gallery in Lugano proudly presents “(TRA)SH“, the first Swiss exhibition of Pietro Terzini, curated by Chiara Canali. The exhibition, which opened on December 14, 2023, will run until February 9, 2024. Pietro Terzini is a pop artist known for his conceptual ideas expressed across various formats and mediums, from fine art to digital creations, and extending to social media direct messages and viral memes.

The title of the exhibition, “(TRA)SH”, cleverly refers to the materials used in the artworks’ backgrounds, such as bags, boxes, and containers from major international fashion and design brands. Once considered ‘trash’ or ‘luxury waste’, these items are repurposed and transformed into ‘art’ through a Dadaist process of recovery, deconstruction, and reconstruction.

Terzini’s technique diverges from the 1960s Pop Art artists, who depicted packaging with visible logos and signatures. He sources these materials directly from the streets, utilizing them in their original form to create textured collages. The inherent ‘pop’ nature of these materials – their colors, inscriptions, signs, and symbols – are instantly recognizable and memorable to the audience.

Terzini suggests that today’s fashion and technology brands have become the new religions, their logos pervading our popular culture, propelled by advertising and social media. By capturing these brands, Terzini highlights the Zeitgeist of the 2000s, an era defined by consumerism, globalization, and hyper-connectivity.

The brand imagery becomes Terzini’s canvas, where he applies his unique personal style and tone of voice. Each of his created phrases interacts with the brand identity, employing enhancement, irony, or paradox. These phrases are painted in acrylic on packaging and, when photographed and shared on social networks, transform into typical meme elements, leading independent digital lives.

Memes synthesize thoughts, concepts, and emotions, making them one of this century’s most popular communication forms. Terzini’s memes resonate particularly with Millennials and Generation Z, tapping into shared content that fosters social engagement. To the artist, this is a form of ‘popular and democratic art’, accessible to all who understand and circulate it in an endless loop.

The exhibition at KROMYA Art Gallery features around thirty works, including new and familiar subjects, such as the famous acrylic-written Louis Vuitton polka dot bags: ‘The Best Things Are Not Things’ and the cult work on Hermès orange shoppers: ‘Love didn’t meet her at her best / it met her in Her mèss’. The latter originated from a 2019 photo taken at the Via Monte Napoleone store entrance, to which Terzini added text via Photoshop.

The gallery also offers Terzini’s artist book ‘100 DM’, published by Solferino, Gruppo Cairo. This book is a collection of 100 Direct Messages from Terzini, consisting of daily Instagram post screenshots, presented against a white background in the typical DM cloud format. It’s a mini-artwork, an item to be browsed and collected, featuring a stream of 100 messages reflecting on themes close to the artist’s heart: family, love, friendship, dreams, emotions, experiences, gestures, free drinks, and the myriad facets of life.

The exhibition, in collaboration with the Ferrero Arte Contemporanea Gallery in Ivrea, will remain open to the public on the following days and times: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, Wednesday and Saturday by appointment (T. +41 919 227000, tecla@kromyartgallery.com); closed from December 25, 2023, to January 2, 2024. Admission is free. For more information, visit www.kromyartgallery.com.