Fossato di Vico has been tied to contemporary art since the late ’80s, when the very first encounter between artists and the castle took place. This connection then evolved into the festival “Artisti a Fossato di Vico – Artists in Fossato di Vico”. The exhibitions involved all the medieval spaces in the town centre, creating a meaningful contrast, an expressive symbiosis that added a distinct and personal meaning to the pieces, different for each observer. Contemporary art was a mean of expression, sometimes of protest, at a time when people felt a strong need to communicate. In the last few years this tradition, that had been temporarily disrupted, has been newly welcomed as an emotional vehicle. This world is not too dissimilar from thirty, fourty years ago, but it has completely different means of communication, especially in terms of speed.

In 2022 the exhibition “Era Nostra” contemplated the dynamics of life. Playing on the ambiguity of the title (it means both “Our Time” and “It Was Ours”), it was a starting point for a new artistic season. The aim was not to cut ties with the past, but to reclaim it, in a perfect union with the great monuments of the ancient and medieval past that Fossato di Vico treasures. Installations, sculptures, paintings, lights and shadows brought a timeless beauty to the spectator, a mirror of the present and an illusion of the past, in unusual encounters between medieval frescoes and shapes molded in metal, between Roman sculptures and conceptual paintings.

The journey continued in 2023 with the exhibition “Co ’l mezzo della virtù – L’Umbria e il Perugino”, a travelling display that involved several cities, including Perugia, Spello, Nocera Umbria and Fossato di Vico. It was an encounter between worlds; one, the the time of Perugino and Signorelli, the passage from the Middle Ages to the Modern Era, the other our everyday life, our perception of that past, of its messages and its images. Different languages met and were translated by the artists into paintings, photos and sculptures. In Fossato di Vico they lived in the historical rooms of the prisons, in the Auditorium of Saint Cristopher and in the Antiquarium.

Therefore, in Fossato di Vico the visitor now has the chance to compare distant ages that are actually closer than they seem. “A quella parte ove ‘l mondo è più vivo – personale di Alvaro Galassi”, from 15th Dicember 2023 to 25th February 2024, reveals the strong connection between this region and contemporary art. The artist’s vision of his everyday and familiar life is reinterpreted in the light of a personal Renaissance. Glimpses of quiet countryside in Umbria near the stone of the city walls remind us of life in the Middle Ages. Glances, lights and colors alternate with Bosch or Bruegel-like dreamy landscapes, in an harmony similar to the one Dante uses to describe the heavenly skies.