Images of Class: Operaismo, Autonomia and the Visual Arts (1962-1988)

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    Jacopo Galimberti

    Publisher: Verso

    Year: 2022

    Format: Paperback

    Size: 449 pages

    ISBN: 9781839765292

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The first overview of the unique encounter between artists/architects/designers and prominent Marxist current Workerism (aka Operaismo)

During the 1960s and 1970s, Workerism and Autonomia were prominent Marxist currents. However, it is rarely acknowledged that these movements inspired many visual artists such as the members of Archizoom, Gordon Matta-Clark and Gianfranco Baruchello.

This book focuses on the aesthetic and cultural discourse developed by three generations of militants (including Mario Tronti, Antonio Negri, Bifo and Silvia Federici), and how it was appropriated by artists, architects, graphic designers and architectural historians such as Manfredo Tafuri. Images of Classs signposts key moments of this dialogue, ranging from the drawings published on classe operaia to Potere Operaio’s exhibition in Paris, the Metropolitan Indians’ zines, a feminist art collective who adhered to the Wages for Housework Campaign, and the N group’s experiments with Gestalt theory. Featuring more than 140 images of artworks, many published here for the first time, this volume provides an original perspective on post-war Italian culture and new insights into some of the most influential Marxist movements of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries worldwide.

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About the Contributors

Jacopo Galimberti is an art historian and Assistant Professor (tenure-track) at IUAV (Venice).

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