Carlo Zanni (La Spezia, 1975) is an Italian born artist living between Milan and New York.
Carlo Zanni’s work is focused on the intersection of computation and representation using and fusing old and new media (Drawing, Painting, and Internet) to shape landscapes and portraits often confronting themes such as real time/real life; fiction/information; social economy/special effects. Ideally Carlo Zanni’s practice finds its roots in the conceptual aesthetics of artists such as Sol Lewitt and above all in the sentence: “The Idea Becomes a Machine that Makes the Art” (Sol Lewitt). Zanni creates his own real time digital worlds, structuring them so that Internet feedback can take the lead in shaping the visual and real-world related information that they project.
In recent years, Zanni’s work has been shown worldwide in galleries and museums including: MAXXI Museum, Rome (2007, 2006); New Museum, New York (2005); Gavin Brown’s Enterprise at Passerby, New York (2005); Chelsea Museum, New York (2004); CCA Glasgow (2003); Borusan Center for Culture and Arts - Istanbul (2003); Analix Forever Gallery, Geneve (2003); P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, New York (2001).
In 2002 he organized a three day chat based dialogue called “P2P_$: Peer to Peer $elling Processes for net_things” inviting 40 artists and curators to discuss these subjects online. The second edition “P2P_.edu: Peer to Peer Educationals for Art Dealers” was held from April to June ’03.
In 2003, he was also invited by CCA Glasgow’s curator Francis McKee to create a specially commissioned online net project and was featured in “Copy it. Steal it. Share it” at the Borusan Center for Culture and Arts - Istanbul, a show curated by Anne Barlow and Michele Thursz. Following a multi-year investigation on net art market issues (inspired by the IKB International Klein Blue, the color patented by Yves Klein) during Artissima X he presented a sculpture-server called “AltarBoy” (Altarboy-Cyrille): a sculptural portrait as well as tactical approach to sell Internet based works.
In 2004, invited by Christiane Paul (Adjunct Curator of New Media Arts, Whitney Museum, NY) and Zhang Ga (Parsons School of Design, NY), he showed the second Altarboy sculpture, “Oriana”, a networked portrait of Italian writer and journalist Oriana Fallaci. Zanni was the recipient of the “2004 Rhizome.org commission” for which he produced a net videogame challenging the boundaries between video, painting, net games and photography.
In late 2005 The New Museum in New York hosted a presentation of the project. In February 2005, with artist Yucef Merhi, he hacked into the Time-Out New York website and shaped a cityscape using their online queries database. This work called “Time In” was shown and performed live at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise during the opening of “Culture Counter” a show organized by Fernanda Arruda and Michael Clifton. His first retrospective of digital works opened in October 2005 at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), London which also published his first book “Vitalogy” currently distributed by Cornerhouse books.
Zanni was also featured in “8bit” a documentary by artist Marcin Ramocki that premiered in October, 2006 at MoMA, Museum of Modern Art, New York. More info on the artist at: http://www.zanni.org