Paolo Ventura
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(Milan, 1968) Internationally acclaimed artist Paolo Ventura is a master of the staged narrative, bringing the great theatrics and drama of the world to light in his moody artworks. Born in 1968, he grew up in Milan with summers spent in the hilltops of Eastern Tuscany. His father, Piero Ventura, was a children’s book author during the 1970s and 1980s. At the end of the 1980s, Ventura attended the Academy of Fine Arts of Brera where he was immersed in Italian history and techniques. He studied the visual language of the Italian Masters and, more importantly for his later works, studied fresco-painting. At the beginning of the 1990s he started working as a fashion photographer, acquiring yet another technique. After a few years, Ventura moved to New York to pursue his personal artistic path. The stories his grandmother had told him about the two World Wars had very much impressed him and in his studio in Brooklyn he began to build and photograph small dioramas about World War II in Italy. In 2010 he moved back to Italy, to Anghiari, a small town in Tuscany. There, in an old studio in the countryside, he began to work on his project Short Stories, in which he and his family become photographic subjects. Ventura’s work is included in public collections worldwide. In 2011, Ventura was commissioned to make a new series for the Italian Pavilion at the 54th Venice Biennial. More recently, he has been commissioned to design major opera sets, including Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carouselin 2015 and Ruggero Leoncavallo’s Pagliacciin 2017, as well as the January 2020 cover for Vogue Italia.