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Castoffs turned into art

Installation Rem(a)inders by Michelangelo Pistoletto. (Photo: Global Times)

BEIJING, April 14 -- Worn-out high heels and clothing, discarded plastic bags, old telephones and computer keyboards and leftover materials from carpenters have magically been turned into eye-catching and interesting pieces of art.

The works, all made with a range of castoffs from people's everyday lives are from the hands of several internationally-renowned artists from home and abroad and are on display at the Beijing branch of Galleria Continua, the Italian art gallery, providing art lovers a great opportunity to enjoy some of the most innovative art that the world has to offer.

Entitled Rem(a)inders, the group exhibition that opened Saturday and will last until August 29, features a range of works by talented artists such as Ai Weiwei and Liu Jianhua from China, Subodh Gupta from India, Michelangelo Pistoletto from Italy and Pascale Marthine Tayou from Cameroon, among others.

At the entrance of the grand three-story exhibition hall, stands a huge installation by prominent Italian artist Michelangelo Pistoletto. With its title the same as that of the exhibition, the main body of the installation is a metal Buddha sculpture, which was bought with a large sum of money, according to a worker at the gallery.

Under the pedestal of the Buddha sculpture there are a lot of used rags and clothes in various materials and styles, which were collected from around China and all roughly piled together.

Scattered in the clothing are outdated electrical items, such as antiquated radios, old telephones and black and white televisions, which were all common household items in China and much of the world in the 1980s and 1990s.

"Every piece of material used in this work reflects the theme of the work and even the whole exhibition," a gallery worker told the Global Times, saying that they have been preparing for the exhibition for more than half a year.

Born in 1933 in Biella, Italy, Michelangelo Pistoletto is considered as one of the most talented Italian contemporary artists today and is a representative of Italian Arte Povera. His works have been widely exhibited in and out of Italy throughout his lifelong artistic career.



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