Boboli Gardens: the exhibition by Tony Cragg

A new exhibition in Florence, hosting the Boboli Gardens from May 5th to October 27th. Brilliant steel geysers stand out against the Florence sky, from the gravel and between the hedges sprout bronze stalagmites of prehistoric appearance and gigantic resin flowers, colossal and very candid stems, hilly eruptions and elliptic shapes, colossal eruptions of imaginary fossil forests, castings of metal that jerk, twist and fold, caught in the last soft phase before they coagulate: the monumental sculptures of Tony Cragg propose an unexpected dialogue, between associations and dissonances, with the ordered nature of the Boboli Gardens and the landscape of the city, between their highly stratified, fragile and organized historical fabric and the primordial strength of the sculptural material.

The Tony Cragg exhibition in Boboli presents sixteen works by the English master, one of the most famous and acclaimed exponents of contemporary sculpture, scattered in the most suggestive places of the garden, to tell the last twenty years of the artist's work, from 1997 to today.
With their imposing but poetic presence they accompany the visitor on a journey through wonder and knowledge, which provides a new interpretative key not only to the sculptures themselves, but also to the space that houses them. It is as if the unexpected plastic presences that now suddenly appear in the open spaces and on the lawns of the Boboli Gardens - near the Grotta del Buontalenti, in the Anfinteatro, in front of the Palazzina della Meridiana and so on - suddenly revealed the energy and the irrepressible underground strength of these hills, of these familiar and comforting views, ordered by architects and gardeners over the centuries. But here, with Cragg's sculptures, that Matter joins History, displacing us.

The role that Tony Cragg attributes to sculpture is precisely this: starting from an incessant and restless exploration of the material and its relationship with the environment that surrounds us, new meanings, dreams and languages emerge. "It is the first time that a great Italian museum has dedicated a monographic exhibition to Tony Cragg," comments Eike Schmidt, director of the Uffizi Galleries "and the Boboli Gardens, with its natural wonders, ancient works of art and its structure. strongly rational, it is the perfect theater for this exhibition. In fact, the theme of sculpture in the park, central to the artist's poetry, necessarily includes forms inspired by nature and its mysterious strength, which Cragg creates to elicit a strong reaction from the observer, whether of pure emotion or intellectual interpretation ”.