Bruno Gambone: From the Olnick Spanu Collection

bruno cover

This book is published by Magazzino Italian Art Foundation on the occasion of the exhibition Bruno Gambone: From the Olnick Spanu Collection at the Consulate General of Italy in New York, February 24 – March 23, 2020.

To read the full catalog, click on the image of the cover.

Essay and Artwork Descriptions
Gilda Cefariello Grosso

Armando Varricchio
Francesco Genuardi
Nancy Olnick & Giorgio Spanu
Vittorio Calabrese

Editing, Editorial and Production Management
Karolina Chojnowska

Jeremy Carden for NTL, Florence

Alexa Hoyer
Marco Anelli with lighting design by Tommaso Sacconi
Montse Zamorano

Publish Date
September 2020


Art - Collections, Catalogs, Exhibitions

Magazzino Italian Art Foundation

Waterhouse Cifuentes Design

Trim Size
8.5 x 5.6 (21.6 x 14.2 cm)



Library of Congress Control Number 

© 2020 Magazzino Italian Art Foundation


About the Artist

Bruno Gambone was born in Vietri sul Mare (Salerno) in 1936. In the early 1950s, when he was a teenager, he dedicated himself to ceramics, gaining experience and following in the footsteps of his father, Guido Gambone, one of the greatest Italian ceramists of the 20th century, at his workshop in Florence. Toward the later part of the 1950s, he went on to work in Andrea d’Arienzo’s ceramic factory in Florence. After working for d’Arienzo, Gambone experimented with fabrics and painting on canvas, going onto present his first solo painting exhibition at Galleria La Strozzina in Pallazo Strozzi in Florence in 1959.

In the early 1960s Bruno Gambone set out for New York where he met artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein, Louise Nevelson and Andy Warhol, while continuing his experience in painting, sculpture, and also in theater and cinema. Eventually, Gambone returned to Italy and settled in Milan. Following his father’s death in 1969, he returned to Florence to keep the ceramic studio running and devoted himself almost entirely to ceramic work.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Gambone went on to experiment with glass in partnership with manufacturers in the Colle Val D’Elsa area, and with other studios in Venice, designing jewelry and furniture works inspired by the same imaginary animals which frequented his ceramic works.

Bruno Gambone is a member of the Italian National Ceramics Council and of the Academy of Geneva. He served as President of CNA's ASNART (Italian Trade Association of Artistic Craftsmen) for ten years and today remains its Honorary President. In 1997 he was appointed Artistic Director of the Italian Ceramic Awards of Vietri sul Mare (Salerno.)

Gambone’s work has been the subject of major solo and international exhibitions including Mostra internazionale dei giovani (Milan, Turin, 1967); Oggi (Milan, 1968); 30 artisti europei (Bochum, 1969); Donne Madonne e Sirene (Salerno, 2001); Corno d’Autore (Naples, 2001); Terra e Fuoco (Brussels, 2003); Metamorfosi di terra (Turin, 2007); Sculture (Florence, 2007). He has also participated in national (International Pottery Competition, Faenza, 1971 – ’72, ’74, ’77 – Venice Biennale, 1972; XV Milan Triennale, 1973; Mediterranean Pottery Competition, Grottaglie, 1979, Gallery, Bologna, 1985; Galleria Piaser, Turin, 1987; Galleria My Home, Albenga, 1988; Galleria L’Angololungo, Rome, 1990; Arte Fiera, Bologna, 1991; Galleria Fallani Best, Florence 1996) and international fairs (Munich fair, 1974; Silverberg Gallery, Malmö, 1975; Art Muddy, Tokyo, 1979; Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1982; Festival of Italian Design, Houston, 1983; III International Ceramic Festival, Mino, Japan, 1992).


About the Contributors

Gilda Cefariello Grosso completed a degree and then a PhD at the Department of the History of the Arts at the University of Pisa. 

A scholar of 19th and 20th century Italian and foreign applied arts, with a particular interest in ceramics, she is the author of numerous publications and has organized exhibitions in conjunction with important Italian and foreign museums, such as the International Museum of Ceramics in Faenza, the Museum of Ceramics in Vietri sul Mare, the Museum of Ceramics of Castelli d’Abruzzo, the Municipal Museum of the Manifattura Chini in Borgo San Lorenzo (Florence), the Museum of Applied Arts, Budapest, and the Museu Nacional do Azulejo, Lisbon.

She serves on the management board of the magazines D’A and La Ceramica Moderna & Antica.

She curated the scientific ordering of the Municipal Museum of the Manifattura Chini in Borgo San Lorenzo (Florence), inaugurated in 1999. In 2018 she was appointed as the scientific conservator at the same museum. She was responsible for digitalizing the entries for the Chini ceramics at the International Museum of Ceramics in Faenza for the catalogue of the Office for the Artistic and Cultural Heritage of Emilia Romagna. 

In 1994 she served on the jury of the Giovani e materia competition at the International Crafts Fair in Florence. In the same and the following year, she was also a jury member for the ARTCO competition for traditional and contemporary arts and crafts, which was part of the Tusciarte event in Viterbo. In 1997 she sat on the jury of the 4th Vietri sul Mare Ceramics Award, entitled Viaggio attraverso la ceramica.

Vittorio Calabrese is the Director of Magazzino Italian Art Foundation. A native of Irpinia, Italy, he specializes in the management of international and cultural institutions, art business practices, collection management, and appraising. Vittorio holds a BA and MSc in Business Administration and Management from Bocconi University, Milan, and an MA in History of Art and the Art Market from Christie’s Education, New York.

He has curated several exhibitions including: Ornaghi & Prestinari, Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, New York, 2016; Marco Bagnoli, Domenico Bianchi, Remo Salvadori: From the Olnick Spanu Collection, Hillyer Art Space, Washington D.C., 2017; Marco Anelli: Building Magazzino, Italian Cultural Institute, New York, 2017; Bagnoli, Bianchi, Salvadori, The Garrison Art Center, New York, 2018; Alessandro Piangiamore: Marango, Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, New York, 2018; Marco Anelli: Building Magazzino, Alice Curtis Desmond & Hamilton Fish Library, New York, 2018; he was the juror for Radius 50, Woodstock Artists Association & Museum, New York, 2018. In 2019, he curated Fausto Melotti: Works from the Olnick Spanu Collection, Consulate General of Italy, New York and Renato Leotta, Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò, New York and Cold Spring, New York.

H.E. Armando Varricchio is the Ambassador of Italy to the United States. On March 2, 2016 Armando Varricchio presented his credentials as Ambassador of Italy to Washington, where he had previously served as Head of the Economic, Trade and Scientific Affairs Section, from 2002-2006. Prior to this, he held many high-ranking positions both within the Italian government and abroad. In particular, he specialized in European and transatlantic affairs during his years at the Italian Representation to the European Union and at the Commission. Formerly Ambassador to Belgrade, before that he served, as a young diplomat, in Budapest during the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union.

While Chief Diplomatic Advisor to the Presidents of the Council of Ministers Enrico Letta and Matteo Renzi, and Deputy Diplomatic Advisor to the President of the Republic, Giorgio Napolitano, he handled some of the most delicate international dossiers, with a particular focus on security issues. He has a specific expertise in the field of global issues, as he served as Personal Representative (“Sherpa”), at G7/8 and G20 summits both at a national and a European level.

Ambassador Varricchio graduated in International Relations from the University of Padua in 1985 (Summa con Laude), entered the Foreign Service in 1986 and was promoted to the rank of Ambassador in 2014. Prior to embarking on a diplomatic career, he worked in the private sector as Assistant to the Director of the Finance Section of the Marzotto textile Group.

He has been married to Micaela Barbagallo since 1987, and has two sons, Federico and Umberto. An avid reader, he enjoys cinematographic arts and various sports. Ambassador Varricchio has been bestowed with the highest Italian award, Knight of the Grand Cross, as well as with numerous honors from foreign countries.

Min. Plen. Francesco Genuardi is an Italian diplomat with 23 years of experience in the field of International Relations. 

In March 2016 he has been appointed Consul General of Italy in New York, the most prominent consular position in the Italian diplomatic service, covering the States of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Bermuda with a resident Italian population of about 90,000 and more than 3 million Italian-Americans. From November 2014 and prior to his appointment to New York, he was at the Cabinet of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Gentiloni, dealing with parliamentary relations. Between 2005 and 2014 he served at the Cabinet of the Foreign Minister, working with the succeeding Ministers in office. 

From 2002 to 2005 he was appointed Counselor at the Permanent Mission of Italy to NATO, where he was responsible, among other issues, for the relationship with the Press in Brussels and with the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.

From 1998 to 2002 he served as Deputy Consul at the Consulate General in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He joined the diplomatic service in 1993, and between 1993 and 1998 he was at the General Directorate for Economic Affairs, where he dealt with international issues associated with environmental protection and safety; and at the Press and Media Office.

Born in Brussels on July 7, 1967, he graduated in Law at the University of Milan in 1991. He is married and has two daughters.