Artist and independent curator, he has been active in the artistic and cultural scene since 1995. He has exhibited in over one hundred collective and personal exhibitions in Italy, Germany, Austria, Spain, Belgium, Lithuania and the United States. He lives between Italy and Spain. In the panorama of informal Venetian art, it is considered by international critics as one of the most original and stylistically convincing personalities. In addition to the "Informal" works, for some years the artist has followed a conceptual counterpoint, collected and meditated, ranging from painting to site-specific installations, from video performances to theatrical performances.
He is currently president of the Cultural Association Vernice Contemporanea and artistic director of BCF Arte and Cittadella Contemporary.
Photo credits Carlomaria Corradin
Massimo Casagrande 1970, Cittadella (Padua), Veneto. He spends his childhood surrounded by art: his initiation occurs between the smell of oils, temperas and palettes which belonged to his father, a figurative painter and a musician.
1988 He graduated as an art master and began working as a clerk in a computer shop.
1989 He starts drawing and painting. He realizes a small sculpture with plastic fusion.
1990 He discovers Antoni Tàpies, by whom he is deeply struck. He realizes some experimental works using cement, waste material, metals, strings, in an anti-aesthetical spirit close to Dadaism.
1994 He leaves his job and moves to London where he dedicates himself to plastic materials, coming to vetroresina (plastic reinforced by incorporated fibreglass) through a completely autonomous research. He realizes some works exploiting the shapeless matter and the creative sign-gesture.
1995 He participates at the first group exhibition obtaining agreements by both the critics and the public.
1996 He comes back to Italy and meets the frescoist Mario Filippin, whose studio he began frequenting since then. The Master's works of art - especially the informal ones - , the books and the reviews will be an endless mine for Casagrande's education.
1997 Mario Filippin invites him to submit his works to the opinion of the art critics Paolo Rizzi and Giorgio Segato. Rizzi invites him to participate in the international exhibit of contemporary art in Padua.
1998 Some galleries invite the artist to exhibit his works. Exhibitions in Padua, Treviso, Verona, and Venice. Publications in the Arte Padova general catalogue and reviews in the field.
1999 He receives the prize of the critics at the National competition A. Favarato. With the Master Mario Filippin he presents the exhibit "Nel segno di...". One man and group exhibitions in Veneto, Emilia Romagna and Tuscany.
2000 He is inserted in the Comed yearbook for contemporary as artist presented by the critics. Numerous exhibitions in Italy and at the Javits Convention Center in New York.
2001 He establishes Gallery Night, a versatile structure dedicated to young artists where visual art, music and literature share conceptions and aims. He meets the young poet Danni Antonello with whom he shares a deep-rooted friendship. Exhibitions in Italy. Publications on reviews, newspapers and catalogues in the field. One-man exhibition at the Gnaccarini Gallery in Bologna.
2002 Maestro Filippin's life is cut short by a sudden illness. Casagrande gives up the vetroresina and begins a new creative process experimenting with new materials and under the mark of various conceptual presences. He dedicates the cycle Forme Appese (Hanging Shapes) to the dead friend, and carried out the video performance "Sugar Free 380 gr."
2003 Anna Breda, chief of the Padua Art Gallery, invites him to the international exhibition of contemporary art in Innsbruck - Austria. He there meets Silvia Fuchs, owner of the Artenvielfalt Kultur Management of Monaco di Baviera, and the Berlinese artist Christian Heinrich. He starts the series of Connessioni (Connections). With a group of artists, he inaugurates Extendo Artis in Bassano del Grappa - Vicenza, an international artistic catalyzer. Thanks to Silvia he meets Jimmy Steppanoff, scenographer and world-famous painter. He starts with them the group Armida. He joins the team Artenvielfalt Kultur Management. Exhibitions in Munich, Frankfurt, Berlin and Hamburg. The monograph of "Connessioni" edited by prof. Hans Felten is released, and the video performance "Sugar Free 380 gr" as well.
2004 He signs a contract of exclusive for Germany with Silvia Fuchs. One-man and group exhibitions in Germany, Austria, Belgium and Italy. The art critic Giorgio Segato confers him the prize Itinerart city of Padua. He is chosen by the gallery Friendly Society in Berlin for a group exhibition on the subject of Friendship. For the occasion he presents a series of works made with chicken bones, waste result of a dinner spent with the German art critic Hans Felten. These works are particularly appreciated by the Spanish critic Miguel Angel Cuevas, who after dedicates him a poetics. He organizes and edits the exhibition Sette + uno (Seven + one), a modern revisiting of the seven capital vices. He invents and presents the eighth vice: Device.
2005 He opens Latte Fresco (Fresh Milk), an arts centre where he realizes evening events on literary subject. He meets the art critic Gian Ruggero Manzoni and the poets Sebastiano Gatto and Andrea Ponso.
2006 He is commissioned by Henderson Shoes, a well-known footwear brand, a video and an installation for Pitti Immagine Uomo. For the Milan Fashion Week, an installation entitled "I washed my dirty clothes" was presented at the show-room of the brand in via Montenapoleone. Armani Collezioni, neighboring the Henderson showroom, considers the installation "exaggerated", removes it without permission and damages it. Casagrande reports the matter to the competent authorities and initiates legal action.
2007 Collaborates with Spina Editrice and illustrates the plaquettes of Guy Goffete Tacatam Blues and L’ortolano di Balzac by Claudio Ricalcati. It presents the new Prestige series of the Ruins to the personal exhibition in Hamburg, for which it publishes a poetics in a limited edition. He designs and takes care of the collective exhibition I Cinque sensi realized for the Ca'Correr park in Cittadella .. Using an inflatable doll, a cactus and a chair, he realizes Tatto. He is invited by the art critic Andrea Diprè to the television program Simply Art. Retrospective at Cittadella-Padova, works from 1997 to 2007. He realizes with the poets Danni Antonello and Andrea Ponso at Palazzo Mantegna in Cittadella-Padova the collective Christmas Between the ox and the donkey, or the relationship between faith and consumerism. It presents impulses from eve. The work consists of 23 white bags and a colored strip that detonates by means of a detonator. Start studies for the new cycle Interventi.
2008 For the Glow of Bibione-Venice Casagrande conceives Let's see if it's still raining. The artist presents to the public a series of installations created with umbrellas and a performance.
2009 He donates a work to the charity auction Vit'arte I.O.R., curated by Gian Ruggero Manzoni at the exhibition building in Faenza. He devoted himself to literature, presenting pictorially unpublished texts of poets and singer-songwriters Miguel Angel Cuevas, Gian Ruggero Manzoni, Claudio Recalcati (Mondadori) Mario Pigozzo Favero (Valentina Dorme). He inaugurates his new studio in Cittadella- Padova, presenting to the public the most significant cycles that have made him appreciate both in Italy and abroad. He founded the Cultural Contemporary Paint Association.
2010 The new cycle of domestic figures begins. Personal exhibition at the Scaramouche gallery in Macerata, Elegance and violence by Danni Antonello. The young Brazilian director Andrè Meridos Costa wants him in the role of a poet in his film shot in Venice, Frammenti on the lagoon. The film premiere is presented at the Kassell art academy. In Mestre-Venezia he presents together with the musician Alberto Mesirca, Assalto at the hidden time, curated by Gaetano Salerno for Segnoperenne-Spazio Voltolina. The same project is presented at the Timmendorfer Strand-Lubeck Civic Gallery by Prof. Hans Felten. Personal exhibition in Seville - La Carboneria Huesos sobra papel curated by Francisco Lira. For the occasion, with the poet Miguel Angel Cuevas, he created the Spanish edition of the art book Writing l'incàvo- Escribir el hueco. He is invited as a guest of honor to the collective (in) Càvo tribute to Jorge Oteiza at the National Museum Villa Pisani, curated by Gaetano Salerno, Miguel Angel Cuevas, Giacomo Malatrasi. Recital in the performance of Adolfina De Stefani "Simbiosi".
2011 He participates in the collective "Innocence of becoming" by Gaetano Salerno and Giacomo Malatrasi at the Capodilucca Bologna Arte Fiera Circuito-Off exhibition space. He made 28 unpublished drawings for the publication of the book of poetry Escribir el hueco by the Spanish poet Miguel Angel Cuevas, Il Girasole Edizioni. Luca Cavana, director of the Cavana Arte Contemporanea gallery in La Spezia, invites him to exhibit at the national modern and contemporary art fair in Brescia. The "Luigi Pierobon" secondary school inserts it in the study program of the artistic and cultural heritage of the Cittadellese.
2012 He care for the regional council young entrepreneurs from the Veneto the Art Speed Date exhibition at Villa da Schio Castelgomberto (VI). For the occasion, it organizes the charity auction of the works in favor of Emilia Romagna hit by the earthquake. He was selected for the Brescia Biennale of Art 2013. He exhibited with Cavana Arte Contemporanea at the BAF of Bergamo and Arte Genova. Begin with the Spanish poet Miguel Angel Cuevas the presentation of the book Escribir el Hueco / Writing the Incàvo, the Sunflower editions 2011 Valverde (CT). He exhibited for the occasion at the Carlo Goldoni museum in Venice and in the cities of Padua, Bologna, Florence, Bassano del Grappa (VI), Cittadella (PD) and Galliera V.Ta (PD) the 28 original tables that were reproduced in volume. Cavana Arte Contemporanea invites him to participate in Arte Padova with the cycle Interventi. For the collective Geography Alice presents at the 3D Gallery of Mestre-Venice the video The other truth with the participation of Silvia Biondi.
2013 He begins the study for the new series "Lamento sul bianco". He exhibited at the Biennale of art in Brescia. Care for Contemporary Paint Asolo Contemporary-Asolo (TV) and on the occasion of the Venice Biennale of Art-Off Circuit the Sapere Aude Exhibition at the historic Palazzo Ca 'Zanardi. The video The other truth is selected and presented at the Cultural Center Candiani of Mestre-Venice for Remix Art and Mestre Film Fest-Video Heart. He was invited again to exhibit in the local history of Seville La Carboneria and presents a preview of the Lamento pictorial series on white. He made his directorial debut in the form of a theatrical performance with the same theme on the text of Doroty Armenia and the collaboration of the Musician Alberto Mesirca and the performers Lov and Erik Strauss at the Teatro Sociale in Cittadella-Padova. He always takes care of Contemporary Paint Cittadella Contemporary-Cittadella (PD). With Cavana Arte Contemporanea he exhibited at Arte Verona and with Vernice Contemporanea at the Artist Fair of La Spezia. The study begins for "Diario dello sguardo" (a tribute to Bernard Noel).
2014 He care for the cultural association Vernice Contemporanea the group show "You have a hot ass" (Monnalisa and her why). He exhibited with the Ufo Fabrik gallery in Art Vilnius-Lithuania. Transit in Sicily, Catania and visit the Etna. The smell of sulfur and the white color of the sparse Birches leads him to realize the series "Short trip to Sicily". 10 works on paper that the journalist of Correo de Andalusia, Alejandro Luque notes and wants for the new issue dedicated to the Mediterranean culture of the magazine "Calete" of Cadiz. He founded CACC Centro Arte Contemporanea Cittadella, which led him to temporarily abandon his artistic activity to dedicate himself to the restructuring of the spaces and to the launch of the project.
2015 He begins his artistic direction for the CACC Centro Arte Contemporanea Cittadella and curates, among the many initiatives, the presentation of the book by Tiziano Scarpa (Premio strega 2009) "As I took the drain" and the collective exhibition of international art dedicated to 150th anniversary of the first release of the novel "Alice in Wonderland" entitled "Today it's all very strange" (Alice and her why). Within the same show he is the director of the theatrical show "This is not an egg", a dialogue between Humpty Dumpty and Alice, played by actors Paolo Franciosi and Fabiana Zurlo and with the participation of the classical guitar master Alberto Mesirca.
2016 He moved to Verona where he began his collaboration with the BCF Image and Design Studio directed by the well-known Designer Marcello Cutino. With him he develops the BCF Arte project "Communicating the company through art" of which he becomes artistic director. Organizes and cares for the Municipality of Ossana (TN) the collective exhibition "Once again only".
2017 He is invited to Catania in the cultural review "Periplo mediterraneo" by Giovanni Miraglia and presents his personal exhibition "L'Etna passeggiata" at the Antonio Recca Gallery. The Alluflon Spa group commissioned the installation "Piazza Italia" which was presented at "Ambiente" Frankfurt and the Campagnola Veronese Winery commissioned him, on the occasion of their 110th anniversary, the "Generations" installation. Organizes and curates at the Kanz space in Venice the group exhibition "Fin che la barca" (An ordinary diffidence in conjunction with the 57th Venice Art Biennale which will be presented later in Seville at the Las Sirenas Civic Center and always at the Kanz space in Venice "Find me! International group show".
2018 He becomes author and artistic director of Autentica Unconventional Art Fair, a new independent art fair in the Veneto region and the Verona Artistic High School invites him to hold an art curator course for students. Organizes and takes care of the independent prize Vernice Art Prize and curates a collective exhibition "Epiphany of the Beyond" tribute to Giacomo Leopardi and his infinity on the occasion of the 220th anniversary of his birth.
2019 For Vernice Contemporanea he curates the itinerant group exhibition (Vicenza-Prato-Cadiz-Sevilla) "Indelebile" (Leonardo's legacy today) on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of Leonardo Da Vinci and the second edition of the Vernice Art Prize (Caos Italia -Ambiente, Politica e Società del "Bel paese"). Become the art director of Trinitart, the new project of Consorzio Santa Trinita of Prato city (Tuscany) and of Lavanderia Fusina Arte Contemporanea, Milan. He opens his new studio in Milan.
2020 Due to the pandemic, all his curatorial activities planned or in progress are canceled. He began studying the Artenatura project with the idea of opening the first open-air museum of contemporary art where it will be possible to "live in art" by choosing the Berici Hills as a place.
2021 In Pozzolo-Vicenza, a very small village located south of the hills, he rents a forest of 60,000 square meters for the realization of the project Artenatura. Launches the Call for Arists “Art in the Hills” for the selection of works and artists but the project, while obtaining flattering acknowledgments from the institutions, does not materialize due to lack of funds.
2022 Return to Cittadella and open a new studio. The new Cittadella Contemporary curatorial project begins with the aim of creating excellent art and cultural events in the city, in public and private spaces. He creates the new "Naturaviva" series of works. Installations made on World Environment Day with old bricks, tree roots and organic material. In Cittadella (PD), on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Fluxus movement organizes in collaboration with the Archivio Conz of Berlin he curates the Fuxus 60th-Tributo a Francesco Conz event. In December he takes a pleasure trip to southern Portugal to meet his friend and poet Flavio Moro.
Fascinated by the Portuguese land, he decides to move.
2023 In February he moved definitively to Algarve-Portugal and began his research on this land and its peculiarities. on June 5, on the occasion of World Environment Day, he creates a big installation with seven large bags containing earth and ice. This installation will become an integral part of the performance of the poet Flavio Moro and the actress Chiara Vighetto. He begins to create paintings dedicated to the places he visits and studies to create installations with a clear reference to the unusual places of storks' nests. Well present throughout the Algarve region.
Established art critics and professionals such as Miguel Angel Cuevas, Giorgio Fedeli, Danni Antonello, Sebastiano Gatto, Gian Ruggero Manzoni, Andrea Ponso, Hans Felten, Alejandro Luque, Giovanni Miraglia, Giorgio Segato, Paolo Rizzi, Francisco Lira, Marcello Cutino have paid attention to the artwork.
Most expert: Miguel Angel Cuevas