Street art has a strong tendency to connect people, unite communities, forge partnerships.
When Venetian artist Manuel Di Rita, much better known as Peeta, arrived in the Southern Italian city of Agropoli, his plan was to give life to new perspectives, ones that open up like the pages of a book on a facade of the A. Gatto high school.
His mesmerizing mural now stands as a gift to the students, the teachers and the citizens of this town, thanks to the Urban Area - A Scena Aperta project by the a.DNA association held between November 6th and 24th, 2017.
When the students of the A. Gatto high school in Agropoli expressed a wish to have an artist paint a mural on their school, director Fortunato Ricco got in touch with the a.DNA association. Already active in the Province of Salerno and Rome, this collective is more than familiar with the way street art influences public spaces and their communities.
After a little bit of brainstorming, the project invitation was sent up north to Peeta, one of Italy’s most renowned urban artists today.
More than one thousand students of the A. Gatto high school had an introduction to the initiative through a meeting with Mirko Pierri, art curator of the a.DNA association, who spoke about the significance of contemporary urban art.
Later on, they were also invited to observe the artist at work, while Pierri continued to explain the very process of mural-making: from initial sketches to the materials, to the finished piece itself.
After a couple of weeks and some bad weather, Peeta’s magnificent 300-square-meter mural finally appeared. ”I’ve imagined the corner formed by the four façades as an opened book filled with colors and shapes, narrating both the morphological structure of the area than its architectural tradition,” said Peeta for Widewalls.
”The book with its content is a metaphor for the knowledge and culture an high school represents while the choice for an anamorphic style is an attempt to subvert the normal perception of the building and invite the audience, represented above all by the students, to observe it through new perspectives.”
That is not just a practical advice but also an invitation to be always open to new readings of the surrounding world, thanks to a wide open and imaginative mind.
For Peeta, it was important to study and understand the surrounding environment, in order to metaphorically reproduce it and design the piece aiming at mingling with the context on all its levels. It is something the artist usually does for his murals, which usually require a certain point of perspective for best viewing.
This was Peeta’s first time working in Agropoli as well, but by his own admission, the guys from a.DNA were more than a good partner, providing all the help and support he needed.
”It has been a tough work for me, a personal challenge in all its steps, but we have worked hard together in order to reach the best results and to give back a meaningful piece to those who trusted us for this project.”
Scroll down for more images from Agropoli!
All images by Sonia Di Santo, courtesy a.DNA collective.