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Anita Valentini

Anita Valentini

Art historian and critic

ModoFiorentino Associazione Culturale

The following text is an excerpt from the exhibition catalog.

The Finnish designer and artist Markku Piri has the sublime ability to express himself in many languages of art. Like so many foreign artists, he loves his native country, yet at the same time is fascinated by Italy for what it has meant and still means to the world of art.

Piri has inherited his special relationship with nature from Finland, a distinctively Nordic, culturally fertile trait, which has been lyrically described by one the great Finnish designers, Tapio Wirkkala: “Take a piece of ice in your hand and find in it our culture: find it in a stone smoothed by rapids or in sand formed by waves.” Another gift of his that can be traced back to the culture of his native country is his ability to focus on the essential and transform his vision into pure forms.

On the occasion of the Florentine exhibition in Palazzo Medici Riccardi, I would like to highlight the inventiveness and passion shown in Piri’s works. They are a demonstration of the strength of Scandinavian design, which since the 1950s has conquered Europe and USA, with the Finnish architect Alvar Aalto as one of its pioneers, and inspired also Italian designers such as Gio Ponti. The setting at the Medicean palace will certainly elevate the works of Markku Piri to new heights. There his paintings and glass art commune with the centuries-old aesthetic tradition of Italy.