LUMBUNG ORATIONES, mixed media on panel, two cell phones used by Luca Rossi between 2009 and 2022, the collector’s cell phone, 132×97 cm ; Courtesy Private Collection and Galleria SIX (Milan), Luca Rossi 2022. 

“Luca Rossi” can be considered the best living artist to emerge in the world in the last 15 years, at least because he has chosen that anyone can be ‘Luca Rossi’. More than 100 people say they are Luca Rossi.

In 2009, Luca Rossi anticipated that now widespread role of ‘knowing everything and doing everything’. A fusion and confusion of roles that Luca Rossi interprets as an opportunity to carry out ‘positive attacks’ aimed at reconstructing sense and meaning.

In 2009 Luca Rossi guessed in advance how relevant information management would be, all his projects start from a manipulation of information as if it were clay; in the same year with the “sculptures with fingertips” he anticipates and surpasses the NFT technology and philosophy that would only be developed from 2017. In 2013, he began the ‘Images’ series, which provides access to a sort of contemporary ‘Sistine Chapel’ and can be considered something definitive with respect to art history. In 2009, he anticipates in Italy some aspects of the MSCHF collective that will be born in 2019.

In 2010, he was defined by Fabio Cavallucci in Exibart as “the most interesting artistic personality in Italy” who could concretely change the art system; in 2014, Giacinto Di Pietrantonio referred to him as the “new Vanessa Beecroft”, meaning the new promise of Italian contemporary art. Luca Rossi immediately developed that critical context from which he would later develop an unconventional design. In 2009, he invented the term “evolved IKEA” to highlight the weaknesses of much contemporary art and defined what is known as the “Young Indiana Jones Syndrome”, going on to write about it in 2012 in an article in Artribune. Here too, he anticipates a trend that has been strongly characterising the Italian and international art scene over the last 10 years. In 2022 he hacked into the Documenta 15 event, creating a clandestine project that was seen around the world by 500,000 people; for some years now he has been running a podcast on Spotify that has reached 78,000 listens and since 2016 the “Skype Art Academy” for training artists.

INTERVIEW >


Luca Rossi and Larisultante met again and proposed an interview. Where it is not clear who asked the questions and who gave the answers.
We have chosen to propose Larisultante as interviewer and Luca Rossi as interviewee, but given the collective and emergent nature of these two entities, you could well reverse them.A process of transformation resonates in the interview, a questioning of the boundaries of making art and doing criticism. The interview itself is taken as a Work for the Larisultante collective.If work, audience, place and criticism seem to be four presuppositions of the Art System, this interview attempts to overturn the System, positing as a premise that there is no reader either. At least until the moment when, whoever resonates with these words will say: I am the reader!

_How can art concretely train new eyes?
Art trains those who want to be trained. It has no a priori value, which is why it is important to create cultivate an ecosystem. Art can train by creating new perceptions of the world. By making people change their position. Already historicised art does this, but so does ours. Certainly some work goes through a reflection on the why of that image, others on how it is created, and where it is.Art trains by questioning, by stimulating other questions. That is, if the observer really wants to train.

_ don’t you think your critical action can isolate you?
It is natural that there is isolation when you pursue a radical and absolute idea. History is full of these cases and not only in art. Being immediately well accepted means having peers. When you try to innovate, peers are rare and you have to tolerate loneliness for time to mature. There are other solitudes that resonate. Criticism then is a necessary but annoying activity for those who suffer it. But even this phase we are overcoming because what we criticise is already in the past. The present manifests itself with old patterns and everyone knows they are old. The new already has other channels. Here too there will be a need for criticism but I will be less isolated.

_Why did you choose that anyone can be Luca Rossi?
I chose that anyone can be Luca Rossi because no one had ever thought of him. Besides, he is very contemporary. Nowadays anyone can say anything and there is no hierarchy or knowledge that holds.
Besides, it’s a question of identity. I can express a position through the collective mind that is created and that we are. It’s an asset to be anyone, it’s like that clever Nobody.

_Why occupy and hack spaces that are not yours?
It’s boundary work. If identity is not in one’s body neither are environment and space someone’s. Those places are substantial physical entities. They cannot be copied. You cannot send them to me as files. You have to be there. You have to pick up and go. It’s a way of questioning.

_ Shouldn’t we focus only on the international scene?
The usual story of the Prophets and the Fatherland.
Sure, recognition will come from abroad, but breaking the mould at home is priceless.

_Who will Luca Rossi be in ten years?
He will always be the one from 2009. Luca Rossi will always remain motionless as he could be anyone.

_In what way do you historicize your work?
I always question what I have done and I like to lose data and websites. So that I always have to rebuild everything from scratch. Nowadays historicising means always questioning.

_How do you divide the income since you present yourself as a collective?
The income goes to those who develop certain profitable projects.

_Three names of artists that nobody knows but will be known in five years?
Luca Rossi Luca 

_The art project not yours that you wanted to do?
Definitely MSCHF. They started ten years after Luca Rossi but with a million dollars, we have several points in common, although they still develop pop art, albeit in a dystopian way.

(1) ROSARY (for the Lumbung Orationes project that hakered #Documenta15), rosary, mobile phone headset, Luca Rossi 2022.
(2) By Left Hand Fingertips, saliva, dust, various materials, Luca Rossi 2009-2022, Tate Modern.
(3) If you don’t understand something search for it on YouTube, wooden letters, 11×2 metres, Luca Rossi, Val Badia (Smach 2017).
(4) Thermal Refuge, reading a text inside a spa converted from an air raid shelter, Luca Rossi 2016.  
(5) Whatever you want, anything purchased on Amazon and delivered to the Bourse de Commerce in Paris, Luca Rossi 2021.
(6) Blind Works (2014-2022), customised works by choosing three artists and delivered directly to your home ‘blind’, Luca Rossi 2022.
(7) Order a pizza, pizza orders, press release modification, Massimo De Carlo 2009.

CRITICISM, THE FIGHT, THE FUTURE: LUCA ROSSI  

In the Italian contemporary art scene there is a figure of considerable interest. Luca Rossi–artist/ collective, critic, curator, and blogger–is a controversial personality who works in anonymity, as some kind of Anonymous of the Art System. In Luca Rossi’s philosophy, the ego no longer exists because anyone can be Luca Rossi, at the same time that the “critical process”, the virtual space of the Internet, and the real context no longer have boundaries and blend into one. 

“Luca Rossi” was born in 2009 from the severe critical context that he himself triggered. “Evolved Ikea”, “Young Indiana Jones Syndrome”, “Smart-relativism”, “Grandparents and Parents Foundation”, are just some of the keywords around which Luca Rossi has been developing a daily critical work. Critical concepts that affect an entire generation of artists forced to confront a century as dense as the twentieth century. This critical work has allowed him to anticipate a fusion and confusion of roles that we can now see very well in a role that we could define as “spectauthor”. Luca Rossi’s unconventional projects arise from a manipulation of information that is treated exactly as if it were clay to be moulded, long before the concept of “fake news” became so important in the public debate. The nature of his works experiences a fibrillation between imagination, conventional object, direct experience and mediated experience.

 Today individuals experience a sort of “non-experience” in the sense that they spend most of their time surfing the “network”, producing a “new memory-without memory” or a “passive and a-critical assimilation” into the system. Luca Rossi knows this well. He constantly reminds us of the history of art and ideas, of our past, of what it means to be critical and active, struggling to preserve one’s own authenticity and originality in the great McDonald that is our contemporary world.

Many curators and artists, both in Italy and Europe, have been following Luca’s work with great excitement. By now Luca is considered the only critical voice that “stands out” in the current Italian landscape.

It is worrisome that Luca’s work has yet to be recognized by institutions and organizations, despite receiving the acknowledgement of the public and many curators and artists. This says a lot about what the value that the Italian system places on the “real artist”. The Italian contemporary landscape has been dragging itself down for more than 10 years, producing artists who “copy and paste”, endless repetitions of projects signed by the same names, and decreeing the end of contemporary art. 

Luca Rossi is an independent author for which anyone can be “Luca Rossi”. In this way everyone is stimulated to a new sense of opportunity and responsibility. Luca Rossi started the blog Whitehouse as a platform for art criticism, information, and art-related projects in 2009. A better synthesis of the blog could be found on : www.lucarossilab.it. Major representatives of the art world have participated in the blog, contributing to its popularity. Luca Rossi has written in social networks and specialized magazines like “Flash Art”, Artribune.com, and Exibart.com with lucid criticism and originality.

Luca Rossi was defined “the most interesting personality” in Italy by Fabio Cavallucci, and “the new Vanessa Beecroft” by Giacinto Di Pietrantonio. In 2011 Alfredo Cramerotti (curator of “Manifesta” and Museum Director Mostyn, Wales) wrote: “To be honest, I’m not Roberta (a 2011 project by Luca Rossi) made me think more than dozens of other projects I have seen “live”.

Luca Rossi is an independent author for which anyone can be “Luca Rossi”. In this way everyone is stimulated to a new sense of opportunity and responsibility.

Luca Rossi started the blog Whitehouse as a platform for art criticism, information, and art-related projects in 2009. A better synthesis of the blog could be found on : www.lucarossilab.it. Major representatives of the art world have participated in the blog, contributing to its popularity. Luca Rossi has written in social networks and specialized magazines like “Flash Art”, Artribune.com, Exibart.com and Huffington Post with lucid criticism and originality.

Enrico Morsiani (1979) is the coordinator of the open collective Luca Rossi. In 2004 he graduated at Bologna University in International and Diplomatic Sciences. Between 2001 and 2009 he took part in solo and group exhibitions in Italy and abroad. Between 2005 and 2010 he attended “ImproTeatro” theater improvisation courses and today he works on the field of communication. In 2016 he opens the “Luca Rossi Lab” site that develops and coordinates all the projects realized in 10 years. 

Luca Rossi was defined “the most interesting personality” in Italy by Fabio Cavallucci, and “the new Vanessa Beecroft” by Giacinto Di Pietrantonio. In 2011 Alfredo Cramerotti (curator of “Manifesta” and Museum Director Mostyn, Wales) wrote: “To be honest, I’m not Roberta (a 2011 project by Luca Rossi) made me think more than dozens of other projects I have seen “live”. In 2013 the art critic Angela Vettese stated that since he read Luca Rossi’s blog she stopped devoting himself to the practice of art but only to theory. In December 2015 a comparison between Mario Perniola and Luca Rossi was published in the magazine Alfabeta2. In 2017 an article from Artribune magazine summarizes Luca Rossi’s work starting in 2009.

Selected official and unofficial art projects:

Mart, Rovereto (2009); Whitney Biennial, New York (2010); Biennale di Venezia (2013, 2015, 2019, 2022); Abbazia di Sénanque (2013); Gamec di Bergamo (2014); Boros Collection, Berlino (2015); Serpentine Gallery, Londra (2015); Fondazione Prada, Milano (2016); Hotel Helvetia, Porretta Terme (2016); Quirinale, Roma (2017); SMACH 2017, Val Badia (2017); New Museum, New York, (2017, 2021); Tate Modern, Londra (2017, 2021); National Gallery of Scotland (2018); Centrale Fies/ Manifesta 12, 7800 Project (2018); Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, #OccupySandretto (2018); ICA Milano (2019); Gagosian Gallery Rome (2019); Venezuelan Pavilion (2019); Prada Foundation Venice (2019); My Arbor My Art, MyArbor (2019); Palazzo Strozzi (2021,2022); Hangar Bicocca (2021); Bourse de Commerce (2021); Pompidou Museum (2022); MoMA Museum (2022); Documenta 15 (2022); Lisson gallery (2022), Galleria SIX (2023).