La mela reintegrata

Author: Michelangelo Pistoletto
Title: La mela reintegrata
Date: 2016
Location: piazza Duca d’Aosta, Milan

Above: Michelangelo Pistoletto, La mela reintegrata, 2016, piazza Duca d’Aosta, Milan, photo by Andrea Scuratti – Comune di Milano.

A large apple, 8 meters high, seven in diameter, made of a mixture of clay and marble dust on a metal structure, bears the mark of a bite at the top: the reintegration of this break through metal clips represent a sort of “mending” of the removed part of the fruit. The sculpture stands in the center of the square in front of Milan Central Station.

After having made the vital flow of existence burst into art with his Mirror Paintings, then replacing the traditional art practice with installations and street theater, and finally going back to large-scale sculpture in the Eighties, Michelangelo Pistoletto has recently elaborated a conception of the universe that involves the idea of new infinity and of the Third Paradise, intended as a finally achieved unity of nature and artifice, art and life, humanism and technology.

The emblematic element of this broad philosophical vision is the apple, symbol of the original conflict between man and nature, here highlighted by the bite, as a sort of symbolic tear in the natural perfection: a tear inflicted by the man, and that the artist wants, equally symbolically, to fix. The apple, in a first version covered with real turf, was initially placed in the center of Piazza del Duomo, on the occasion of Expo 2015. It was then donated to the city, in the light gray marble version, and placed in front of the Central Station, so that its opening to the world was in tune, as declared by Pistoletto himself, with the opening to the world that occurs in the place of the main railway hub of the city. The Apple was donated to the city of Milan thanks to an agreement between the artist, the Cittadellarte Foundation, Biella, and FAI, the National Trust for Italy.