Rome, the word itself may already be conjuring up the images of a time gone by, of large pale stone buildings and leaders in togas. This isn’t necessarily anyone’s fault and it isn’t even incorrect; indeed all these things did happen here and of course there is a great deal of history here at the hub of the roman empire. But today Rome is more than just the ground where many relics of the past still stand, the ancestors of the architects and artists and innovators who created so many of the brilliant and iconic structures didn’t all just up and leave. Now a fresh new wave of thinkers and designers are filling the streets of Rome and they are bringing their work to the people.
The MACRO (which is an abbreviation of Museo D’Arte Contmporanea Roma) is now the leading destination for Rome, if not Italy’s contemporary artists. Sure, this building is a modern work of art alone, with its enormous ceilings and versatile spaces all intermeshed with a web of modern metals, a great exhibition space begins with being a marvel in its own right. Some of its interior spaces are spectacular with its giant fiery orange geometrical centre surrounded by several walkways, its not hard to see that great, huge and up to date work is conducted here, and this is exactly what the MACRO is about. This space has been home to fantastic collectives from artists all over the world, from lesser known painters to giant brands like superstar musicians Pink Floyd, but simply being another set of walls is in no way the Museums end game.
Opening Up to the People
Since September 2017 a brand-new idea has been brought to fruition at the museum, named MACRO Asilo or (Asylum for English speakers) is a beautifully executed device that intends to transform the entire Museum into a ‘living organism’. Technophobes can relax, at this metaphor as nobody is actually programming sentience into a building, but what they do want is to implant knowledge, experimentation and instill creativity into visitors in an entirely new way. Joyfully breaking down the tired idea of galleries with guidelines and opaque meanings, this 15 month long truly hospitable idea wants not just the artists but the community to get involved. What this means to the layman is that there is a new way to see contemporary art and it’s happening now at MACRO. There is no orderly way to go about exploring the new exhibits and installations on in here, it is designed to be a free for all playground of ideas that are seamlessly spread from designer, to artist to visitor. To get here they have had to re-think their museum space and unlearn all the old traditions that come with them. Here they hope that anyone versed in art or not can wander in and become engaged in someone’s work, not just that but that may be able to learn something about the craft, the ideas it portrays and how they can implement that in their own lives after they leave. This revolutionary new open conversation continues at the Asylum from now until December 2019.