Faces marked by time flank each other in the “colors” of black and white. Paratactically juxtaposed, wrinkles marking their faces as leitmotifs of distant universes, there are 1000 large photographic portraits that will cover Piazza del Duomo on the facades of the Museo del Novecento and Secondo Arengario until 14 February. The “Inside Out” project, conceived by the French artist JR, is striking for his “neorealist” style, so far from the glossy glamor comme d’habitude as to seem improbable, due to the marked distance from the more à la page indifference to portraiture. They are “real and from life” faces, and the difference can be seen right down to the emotion.
Museum of the Twentieth Century
Born from an initiative by Cristina Ferradini of the Amplifon Foundation, the project was carried out with the participation of the Municipality of Milan – Culture and ArtsFor, Museo del Novecento to give “a voice to the elderly – in the aftermath of a page of history marked by a harsh period of isolation – and raise public awareness of the importance of their role and of the comparison between the different generations”
The thousand portraits of elderly people – guests of forty Italian RSA (Healthcare Residences for the Elderly) part of “Ciao!”, the project launched in 2020 by the Amplifon Foundation to support the improvement of the quality of life of the elderly, also in response to the isolation linked to the pandemic emergency – they occupy an area of 700 square meters and mark the most celebrated square in Milan with impactful delicacy. The elderly in Italy are a silent multitude, and their mute portraits in the most frenetic and distracted city, which at times excludes them (the polluted air is enough, not to mention anything else) remind us of journeys, suffering and still active roles in spite of everything and everyone, which a conscious and civilized society should never ignore. These 1000 portraits are a warning, like an attractive and mocking “Medusa”, and it is useless to turn around: they will capture you just by passing by!