The Quest for Happiness

Italian Art Now

Art Museum Gösta 26.10.2019—27.9.2020

The Quest for Happiness – Italian Art Now presents a selection of the most interesting Italian contemporary artists. Their common theme is the quest for happiness. The majority of them have never exhibited in Finland before.

For many of them, creativity and energy have been the answer to the economic and political crisis that struck Italy in 2008. This occurred throughout the whole Western world. After a decade of geopolitical overturn, happiness became a value of rising importance. Subsequently it became a remarkably popular subject in many fields. They are personal achievement, job contexts, academic researches, consumerism and environment protection, to name a few. 

The exhibition’s artists present through their artworks a kaleidoscopic interpretation of the concept of happiness today. As a result, they are touching on key topics such as spirituality and materialism, family and communities as well as time and nature. Furthermore, such topics as history and identity, politics and freedom, feelings and technologies are dealt with. The show offers a chance to investigate what happiness means in contemporary art. It presents the viewpoint of young and mid-career Italian artists who have already experienced one of the most severe political, economic and social crisis in generations.

The artists included in the exhibition The Quest for Happiness are Yuri Ancarani, Silvia Camporesi, Loris Cecchini, Federica Di Carlo, Goldschmied & Chiari, Francesco Jodice, Marzia Migliora, Matteo Montani, Okkult Motion Pictures (Alessandro Scali & Marco Calabrese), Federico Pietrella, Pietro Ruffo, Marinella Senatore, Federico Solmi and Zimmerfrei.

The exhibition is curated by Maria Stella Bottai, Lorella Scacco and Pirjo Immonen.

A Guided tour to The Quest for Happiness

Take a tour to The Quest for Happiness with our guide. You’ll have interesting information about themes and artworks of the exhibition.

Perhaps most indicative of the complex picture of happiness presented in the exhibition is that so many of the artworks contained refer— obliquely or otherwise — to the traumas of Italy’s absolutely tumultuous recent history. Exemplary here are pieces by Goldschmied & Chiari.” Arshake 16.4.2020

Image above: Goldschmied & Chiari, Where Shall We Go Dancing Tonight?, 2019, site-specific installation, mixed media. Photo: Sampo Linkoneva, Serlachius Museums.


The Performance designed by artist Marinella Senatore is part of the School of Narrative Dance which tour around the world. Under the leas of choreographer Maria Fonzino it was performed at Serlachius Museums on 8 March 2020.


The Quest for Happiness – Italian Art Now

Sound stories

Find out more about the interesting features of the exhibition in our sound stories.


Curators of the exhibition Maria Stella Bottai, Pirjo Immonen and Lorella Scacco give background for the exhibition.

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