Works from the collections of CAMeC.
23/09/2023 - 30/12/2023

The exhibition project is made up of 37 works from the CAMeC collections which have a single element in common, the prevalence of the colour blue. Thus the exhibition takes visitors on a diversified itinerary through the various, even distant artistic expressions; and at the same time it invites them to concentrate their attention on physical and mental perception, on the visual and emotional impact, on the evocative and symbolic power of this colour. In the first room, differing representations of seascapes are placed side by side; our eyes and our collective imagination are called on to absorb the blue of the sea and the sky.

The second room has paintings with different themes, dominated by the emancipation of colour, the free definition of the paint texture regardless of its local significance; it is the dominant spiralling of blue which characterises every subject.

The third room presents further interpretations with very different styles: the Surrealist vision of Magritte and Max Ernst; pure abstraction; a minimalist celebration of colour which becomes a mental image.

Finally, the exhibition presents the film Blue by Derek Jarman, made by the British director just before his death, when he was afflicted by loss of sight. It is a kind of spiritual last will and testament which uses a single, identical blue frame and a commentary with several voices. The author expresses this extreme segment of his life with the voice, and at the same time he chooses as the background the colour IKB, International Klein Blue, invented in fact by the artist Yves Klein, who patented it in 1957 and from then on made it the main focus of his artistic research.

Egyptian blue, indigo, Maya blue, ultramarine, cobalt blue, Prussian blue, cerulean blue, Klein blue, YinMn blue: the history of the blue pigment began in the Egypt of the 3rd millennium B.C, thanks to the extraction of the precious lapis lazuli, and it passed through many centuries and civilisations, finding a distinctive use in the history of western art (particularly significant are the Virgin Mary’s attribute of the blue mantle and the use of blue in portraits of the aristocracy); also in literature (the jacket of the idealist the Young Werther is blue, the dress of the tormented Madame Bovary is blue); again in the culture of fabrics (for example the blue jeans which have remote origins but are omnipresent today; but also the Prussian and Napoleonic uniforms).

There have been numerous well-known psychological investigations into the psychology of colours, their symbolic and evocative value, their established action on the emotions. The choice of blue and its widespread use in production and communication are in fact explained by the effects which this experimentation has revealed: this colour is associated with calmness and tranquillity, and favours meditation, harmony, hence productivity. Since blue is commonly associated with harmony and stability, it was chosen as the colour of the flags of the United Nations and the European Union.

Artists on display:
Hans Jean Arp, Pietro Bellani, Pier Giulio Bonifacio, Luciano Botto, Felice Casorati, Angiola Cassanello, Bruno Cassinari, Roberto Crippa, Jan Dibbets, Max Ernst, Dan Flavin, Fernando Farulli, Omar Galliani, Remo Lorenzetti, René Magritte, Katia Martelloni, Derek Jarman, Francesco Martera, Francesco Menzio, Giancarlo Manganaro, Pablo Echaurren Matta, Robert Motherwell, Enrico Paulucci, Nicola Perucca, Concetto Pozzati, Bruno Pulga, Filippo Sartorio, Aligi Sassu, Pino Saturno, Jesús-Rafael Soto, Ettore Sottsass jr, Francesco Vaccarone, Claudio Verna, Enzo Vespignani.

Exhibition promoted by

Municipality of La Spezia
Mayor and Councillor for Culture, Pierluigi Peracchini
Manager for Cultural Services, Rosanna Ghirri

and produced by
CAMeC Centro Arte Moderna e Contemporanea (Centre of Modern and Contemporary Art)

with the support of
Fondazione Sarenco

President, Oriano Mabellini
Director, Daniela Mabellini

whit the contribution of
COOP Liguria

curated by
Giosuè Allegrini

technical-scientific direction
Eleonora Acerbi

Cristiana Maucci

coordinate image and catalogue graphics
Claudia Capelli

exhibition graphics
Sarah Fontana

press office
Luca Della Torre,| Tel. +39 0187 727324  Email:

Municipality of La Spezia

CSArt Comunicazione per l’arte
Chiara Serri | Tel. +39 348 7025100

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