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sculpture by renato avanzinelli

Sculptures in the city


A marble giant supporting the bell tower of the San Michele church and a large family made of terracotta, wood and concrete characters in the Agora' cloister are the protagonists of two contemporary sculpture exhibitions set up in these days in Lucca. A great opportunity to visit two places, one quite famous, the other more secret, where these characters and their stories come to life.


sculpture by renato avanzinelli at thw culture center Agorà in Lucca


Le donne, i giovani e i Santi - Women, Young People and Saints is the sculpture exhibition dedicated to Renato Avanzinelli, set up in the Agora' cloister on the occasion of the 51st anniversary of death of the great artist from Lucca. A people of faces and figures of all ages, familiar faces (some are portraits of his wife and children) and iconic figures (a great Christ). A group of enthusiasts, his six children and many of his former students wanted to organize an exhibition of the most representative sculptures of his poetics, created during his short but industrious life, together with young people and students and those who frequent these silent places housing today the civic library Agorà.

Born in Lucca in 1908, he died in 1970, after graduating at the Passaglia Art school he worked as a teacher and always cultivated a great passion for sculpture as a self-taught artist. The exhibition presents 42 works made with different techniques: from wood, bronze and terracotta, from polychrome ceramics to concrete, a technique particularly loved by the artist from Lucca.

An exhibition that will certainly be appreciated by art lovers thanks to the works of particular interest, inspiring education and culture, in the respect of Lucca's centuries-old tradition.


cloister of the cultural center Agorà in Lucca


The Cloister that once used to be the convent of the church of the Servants, today houses the city library and the Agorà cultural center and is the place of this exhibition with sculptures that invite you to relax and reflect. The fifteenth-century portico, perfectly preserved and paved in terracotta, overlooks the lawn in the center. The well, characteristic of this environment, is attached to a small articulated building whose roof is the balcony of the upper floor which houses a very intimate and reserved small space with seats.

Conventual architecture is very diffused in Lucca hosting schools, common spaces and public locations today. The Agora' cultural center is a place a little outside the traditional visiting routes and hosts also a small garden, formerly the garden of the friars, really welcoming for visitors who want to take a short rest or read a book in peace .

The exhibition will be open every day from 10:00 am to 6:30 pm, until 12 December 2021.


piazza san michele in Lucca


A different location for Mr Arbitrium, an itinerant sculpture representing a monumental male figure of about 5.40 meters, which has found its place in Piazza San Michele, the forum of the ancient Roman city and since then the official center of the city.

The paved square, the row of columns that surround it, the splendid medieval church with all its stories on the facade are quite known to all visitors and one of the favorite "postcard" locations for photos and selfies. The majestic statue of the triumphant angel on top of the facade is proudly standing between two angels.


mr arbitrium in piazza san Michele in lucca

The giant, a resin work by the sculptor Emanuele Giannelli, is the result of the artist's latest period of research, and a reflection on topical issues, in particular on the changes and fast life of our time and it seems to demand the observer: should we preserve traditions and the culture of the past, represented in this case by the church of San Michele, or reject our history and the culture of the Western world?

The international artist Emanuele Giannelli is consciously provocative and creates his works on a perfect balance between figurative and conceptual art. He uses Roman classicism and the ingenious Tuscan provocation mentality interpreted as a positive characteristic, capable of "arousing emotions".

"In this historical moment of great changes and an increasingly accelerated rhythm of life - adds Emanuele Giannelli - I believe that not only in the upcoming decades, but already today we should be clear about the path we want to take, the choice we intend to make" .

Mr Arbitrium can be visited in Lucca for the entire Christmas period, until January 7th. In the same period, at the OlioSuTavola art gallery (from Wednesday to Sunday from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm), about twenty bronze, resin and raku ceramic sculptures will be on display, including the bronze sketches of Mr. Arbitrium.


img: Archivio Turismo.Lucca, R. Giomi / Archivio Agorà /