MOSSO, 1941

The collection created for BABS pays homage to the whimsical and unconventional playfulness that has always been characteristic of the artist from Biella. Throughout his long career, he has never shied away from experimentation that traverses the history of art in the second half of the 20th century. With lucid irony, he explores the material perspectives of Arte Povera, the conceptual ideas of Fluxus, the vibrant pop colorism inspired by Warhol, and the fragmented emotion of experimental cinema, as described by his friend Baj.
Similarly, in the jewelry collection, Nespolo plays with materials, shapes, and colors, maintaining the same disregard for adhering to rules and a constant refusal of dogmatic confinement in free creation. The recurring themes of his artistic research reappear, drawing inspiration from his diverse and eclectic works exhibited worldwide. The theatrical charm of his assemblages, adding artifice to the artificial (including earrings inspired by famous puzzles, rings depicting urban landscapes, brush-bracelets, and logic challenge interlocking solids), come into play.
In this oracular declination, the essential idea returns that art is, in essence, a playful exercise aimed at wonderment. Thus, the role of the artist, even with a precious medium like artist jewelry, which Nespolo provocatively “demolishes” the seriousness of, is simply to invite us to play again.


Ugo Nespolo was born in Mosso (Biella). Graduated in Modern Literature at the University of Turin and graduated from the Albertina Academy of Fine Arts in the same city. Versatile artist works in a wide field of disciplines, from painting to cinema, to sculpture. In the late Sixties he was part of the Schwarz Gallery in Milan that counted among its artists Duchamp, Picabia, Schwitters, Arman.

His first exhibition in Milan presented by Pierre Restany, entitled “Machines and Conditional Objects” – in a way – represents the climate and innovations of the group that Germano Celant will call Arte Povera.
In 1967 he pioneered Italian Experimental Cinema following a meeting with Jonas Mekas, P. Adams Sitney, Andy Warhol, Yoko Ono, in the wake of New American Cinema. In Paris Man Ray gives him a text for a film that Nespolo will make with the title “Revolving Doors”. Baj, Fontana, Pistoletto, Boetti and Merz are among the performers of his films screened and discussed in important museums including the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the Tate Modern in London, the Venice Biennale.

One of the most important pataphysical authorities founded the Ticinese Pataphysical Institute with Baj. In the late sixties with Ben Vautier he started a series of Fluxus Concerts, including the first Italian concert entitled “Les Mots et les Choses”. Sure that the figure of the artist can not be that of an intellectual, studies and writes with assiduity of the facts and disciplines that have to do with aesthetics and the art system. On 29 January 2019, the University of Turin awarded him an Honorary Degree in Philosophy.
He has exhibited with great intensity in galleries and museums in Italy and in the world.

Photo credits Giovanni Gastel