Ugo Carrega

Biography

Picture Ugo Carrega

Ugo Carrega

The artist with his daughter Valeria.
(Photo by Giancarlo Cinquetti)

Born in Pegli (Genoa) in 1935.

Residing in England in 1955 Carrega returned to Italy in 1956 where he began working as a translator for a number of publishers in Milan finally specialising in detective novels. His first love is the theatre; his second the cinema. However he found poetry to be more simple and practical. Dissatisfied he decided to widen the concept of poetry uncovering a third dimension as he wrote. He discovered that each word, as well as having it's own meaning and sound also had a visual form or physical presence that is not usually expressed. After a brief period of research into sound he dedicated himself to developing this visual form upon which he still works today.
He moved to Milan in 1966 where he currently resides.

Debut and Meetings:
In 1970 his works in visual poetry ("symbiotic" or "new" writing as he called them) were exhibited at the Arturo Schwarz gallery in Milan. After abandoning his work as a translator he dedicated his time exclusively to assisting friends working as visual poets by opening a show room, known as the TOOL Centre and later on "Il Mercato del Sale" (in tribute to Marcel Duchamp).
His teachers include Ezra Pound, James Joyce, Marcel Duchamp, Kafka, Dino Campana, Camillo Sbarbaro, Martino Oberto e Emilio Villa. His first written work was published in 1951 and in 1956 he printed his first instalment of experimental poetry entitled "èini". In 1958 he collaborated with Martino Oberto working on his magazine Ana Etcetera where his work entitled "Rapporto fra poeta e il suo lavoro" was first printed in 1965.

Artistic Development:
From 1965 to 1968 Carrega produced his ow magazine "TOOL: Books on symbiotic writing". The first five editions copies while the sixth was designed in colour and printed. The six editions of the magazine effectively investigate the specific field of interference between alphabetic and non-alphabetic characters. In this case Carrega makes use of the term "symbiotic writing" to describe that field of experimental poetry in which different characters and symbols act equally. Following this he developed the theory La Nuova Scrittura (1967), which became operative in 1974 for "Il Mercato del Sale" with the help of Martino e Anna Oberto, Corrado D'Ottavi, Rolando Mignani, Liliana Landi, Vincenzo Ferrari and Vincenzo Accame. In 1973 together with Vincenzo Ferrari and Claudio Salochi he formed the reserch centre 'Centro di Ricerca Non Finalizzata' producing the book entitled "Gli oggetti recuperati della nostra infanzia" and the film "Oggetti sani, oggetti malatti". In 1982 he thought up the idea of "Artscripture" and compiled a small manifesto signed by Vincenzo Ferrari, Luca Patella Magdalo Mussio. As well as TOOL he also produced "aaa" together with Mario Diacono, "Quaderni di TOOL" and "Bollettino da dentro". He managed two editions of the magazine "ESTRA", created the "Centro Suolo" cultural centres in 1969; the "TOOL" centre in 1971; " Il Mercato del Sale" in 1974 and "Euforia Costante" in 1993. In 1988 he produced "l'Archivio di Nuova Scrittura" for Paolo Della Grazia. In 1987 his wife Liliana Landi passed away as did his daughter Maura in 1994. Since then he lives quite isolated dedicating his time to research.

Artistic Research:
Ugo Carrera derives his own experience from literature. From the end of the 1950s due to his dissatisfaction with his own poetic work, he began researching the interchange between words (as images) and images (as words). His work was identified with poetry and then with visual poetry, two areas in which he had never identified himself, just as he had never identified himself with futurism. Ugo Carrega's research grew as he worked independently to construct a work of art that describes the expressive force of literature and painting. If the first work of Carrega was carried out on typed and printed pages with the awareness that "everything is significant", it followed that the support changed and slowly the verbal expression began to flow,expressing 'powerful' concepts (formal and existential) while describing "that which can not be expressed with words" more than just it's literal meaning but a higher 'sense'. According to Carrega, if a word is written on glass, a wall or a piece of card, the meaning changes. In which case if a letter is written by hand, typed or printed, whoever receives it will, at first glance already form an idea about the sender.

Personal exhibitions:

1970
Galleria Schwarz, Milano
Galerie Senatore, Stoccarda

1971
Galerie Reckermann, Colonia
Galleria Pourqoi pas?, Genova

1972
Galleria Blu, Milano

1973
Galleria La Bertesca, Genova
Galleria Veste Sagrada, Rio de Janeiro
Visual Art Center, Napoli
Galleria Il Canale, Venezia
Galleria Spazio Arte, Roma
Mercato del Sale, Milano

1978
Galerie B14, Stoccarda

1979
Collegio Universitario Cairoli, Pavia
Studio Sant'Andrea, Milano

1980
Studio Marconi, Milano
Galleria Multimedia, Brescia
Mercato del Sale

1983
Mercato del Sale

1984
Studio Bassanese, Trieste
Mercato del Sale

1985
Studio Morra, Napoli

1987
Galleria Unimedia, Genova

1988
Mercato del Sale, Milano

1989
Studio Morra, Napoli

1992
Galleria Unimedia, Genova

1993
Invitato alla Biennale di Venezia
Studio XXV, Milano

1994
Galleria Silvano Lodi Jr., Milano
Galleria dell'ltalcornici, Milano
Galleria Libreria Derbylius, Milano

1995
Archivio di Nuova Scrittura "Emorragia dell'lo"
Studio Caterina Gualco, Genova

1996
Sarenco's Club, Verona (Opus Telematicus) - GalleriaVinciana, Milano

1997
Derbylius Galleria, Libreria, Milano

1999
Studio Caterina Gualco, Genova

2000
Fondazione Morra, Napoli
Fondazione Mudima, Milano

Joint exhibitions:

1966
'Esposizione internazionale di poesia sperimentale', Galleria della Sala di Cultura, Modena
'Semana poesia de vanguardia', Galeria Barandiaràn, San Sebastiàn

1967
'Concordancia de artes', Festivales de Espana, Valladolid, San Sebastian, Cuena, Cordoba, Sevilla, Bilbao, Santander, Valencia, Barcelona e Madrid
'Proposte', Teatro Stabile, Torino
'Rassegna di poesia', Club Turati, Milano

1968
'austellung und dokumentation visuelleer poesie' 24. internationale hochschulwochen des österreich, alpech, wien, innsbruck
'Parole sui muri', per le strade di Fiumalbo

1969
'Coincidenze', Pro Loco, Massafra
'Esposizione internazionale di poesia avanzata', Centro Suolo, Milano
'Expo/lnternacional de Novisima Poesia', Centro de Artes Visuales del Istituto Torcuato di Tella, Buenos Aires
'Expocsicion internacional de la nueva poesia', Facultad de humanitades y ciencias, Montevideo
'Karnhoval - carnevale internazionale degli artisti', Rieti
'Poesia de vAngUaRdIA', Zaragoza
'Tool etc', Oblastni Galerie Vysociny, Jihlava, Cecoslovacchia 'Visuelle poesie', Westfàlischer Kunstverein, Munster
'Visuelle poesie', Residenz Salzburg

1970
'de poesia avanzada', Universidad de Zaragoza
'Konkrete Poézie', Galerie de Tor, Amsterdam
'La poesia degli anni '70', Museo del castello, Brescia
'La poesia visiva in Italia', Galleria S.Chiara, Brescia
'Poesia internacional de vanguardia', Galeria Danae, Madrid
'visuelle poesie', Bilddunghaus Schloss Puchberg

1971
'La poesia degli anni'70', Museo del Castello, Brescia
'Sammlung Cremer', Heidelberger Kunstverein; 'sound texts o ? concrete poetry o visual texts', Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam

1972
'I denti del drago', Galleria L'uomo e l'arte, Milano
'ltalian Visual Poetry, 1912-1972', Finch College Museum,
New York
'konkretedichtung', Monaco
'Montreux Espace Situation '72', Montreux
'Scrittura visuale in Italia, 1912-1972', Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna, Torino

1973
'Contemporanea', Parcheggio di Villa Borghese, Roma
'Verso una terza dimensione della scrittura', Galleria La Bertesca, Genova

1974
'Illustrazioni', Galleria Dov'è la Tigre?, Milano
'Poesia visiva in Italia, 1962-74', Studio Il Meridione, Catanzaro 'Poesia visiva internazionale', Galleria Il Canale, Venezia 'Prospectiva 74', Museu de Arte Contemporanea, San Paolo

1975
'Fotomedia', Rotonda della Besana, Milano
Experiments in visual poetry', Dai-lchi Gallery, Morioka, Giappone 'Parlare e scrivere', Galleria La Tartaruga, Roma
'Un modello perseguito: vedere-guardare-leggere', Galleria Rotta, Genova

1976
'La scrittura', Galleria Seconda Scala, Roma
Studio Sant'Andrea, Milano
Unimedia, Genova
'Pan - conceptuals', Gallery Maki, Tokio

1977
'La forma della scrittura', Galleria d'arte moderna, Bologna
'Raccolta italiana di nuova scrittura', Mercato del Sale, Milano 'Segni nello spazio', Castello di San Giusto, Trieste.

1978
'Parola immagine e scrittura', Collegio Raffaello, Urbino

1980
1'Informazione '60-80', Comune di Cento, di Piacenza,
di Pieve di Cento
'Scrittura Attiva', Mercato del Sale, Milano
'Scrittura attiva: processi artistici di scrittura', Rondottanta, Sesto San Giovanni
'Cent livres d'artiste italiens', Bibliothèque Nationale, Galeria des Estampes, Parigi.

1982
'Scrittura attiva: processi artistici di scrittura', Galleria d'arte contemporanea, Suzzara.

1985
'La scrittura visuale in Italia, 1960-1970', Studio Morra, Napoli

1987
'-auf ein Wort!', Gutenberg Museum, Mainz
'Arte diagonale in italia', Galleria De Crescenzo, Roma
'Pittura Scrittura Pittura', La Salerniana, Erice

1988
'Poesia Visiva 1963-1988', Galleria d'Arte Moderna, Verona 'Sehtexte/Parola Immagine', Museo di Bolzano

1989
'WORTLAUT', Galerie Schüppenhauer, Colonia

1990
'Il Librismo', Fiera Campionaria di Cagliari
'Il linguaggio simulato', Civica Galleria d'Arte Contemporanea, Torre Pellice
'Italiana '60', Studio Marconi, Milano
'Sei lirici della Poesia Visuale Internazionale', Archivio di Nuova Scrittura, Milano
'Sine Aesthetica Sinestetica', Galleria Empiria, Roma
'Visual Poetry', Otis/Parsons Gallerya, Los Angeles

1991
'Parola immagine', Museo di Gallarate

1992
'Fluxus Zaslok", Budapest
'Grafica dalle collezioni provinciali', Museo d'arte moderna, Bolzano

1993
Poesure et Pentriè, Marsiglia

1996
Il seme nascosto (pagine al computer) con Mauro Ceolin e Cristina Ruffoni, Galleria dell'Euforia Costante, Milano

1997
ICONOSPASMI, Galleria Spaziotemporaneo, Milano, con Mauro Ceolin e Cristina Ruffoni.

For the latest exhibitions of the artist, please see the Appointments' Archive