Elena Mazzi (Reggio Emilia, 1984) lives and works in Turin and Nice. After studying at the University of Siena and IUAV in Venice, she trained at the Royal Institute of Art (Konsthögskolan) in Stockholm.
Her works are inspired by explorations of specific areas, and they reinterpret the cultural and natural heritage of places by intertwining knowledge and stories handed down by the local communities, with the aim of proposing potential solutions to the humans/nature/culture conflict. Her modus operandi, which can be likened to anthropology, favors a holistic approach that seeks to mend social divisions, starting with a process of observation and then combining different forms of knowledge.
Mazzi’s solo exhibitions include: On Copper, Wax, Iron, Wisteria and Ice, curated by Marco Scotini, at PAV – Parco Arte Vivente in Turin (2022); I Do Not Desire, I Am Moved, curated by Chus Martinez and Albertine Kopp at Der TANK in Basel (2021); Silver Rights, curated by Emanuele Guidi, at Ar/Ge Kunst in Bolzano and Sodertalje Konsthall in Stockholm (2021); Litosfera, curated by Cristiana Perrella, at the Pecci Center for Contemporary Art in Prato (2020); Routes, curated by Stefania Rispoli and Sergio Risaliti at the Museo del Novecento in Florence (2018), and Level O, curated by Vittoria Broggini, at MAGA in Gallarate (2017).
She has also taken part in group exhibitions in venues such as: Norbottens Museum in Lulea (2022); Museo de Antropologia with IIC in Cordoba (2022); Museo MADRE in Naples (2021); Udaondo Museum in Buenos Aires (2021); BOZAR in Brussels (2019); Triennale in Milan (2018); Whitechapel Gallery in London (2018); GAMeC, Bergamo (2018); MAMbo, Bologna (2018); Sonje Art Center, Seoul (2017); Palazzo Fortuny, Venice (2017); GAM, Turin (2016); Istituto Italiano di Cultura, New York, Brussels, Stockholm, Johannesburg and Cape Town (2019-2012). National and international events she has featured in include: the 16th Rome Quadrennial (2016); the 14th Istanbul Biennial (2015) and the 17th BJCEM Mediterranean Biennial (2015).
She has participated in various residency programs including: ZK/U in Berlin (2019); Skaftfell Center for the Arts in Seydisfjordur in Iceland (2018); HIAP in Helsinki (2016-2017); Guilmi Art project in Abruzzo (2015); Via Farini in Milan (2014); Fundacion Botin in Spain (2014); Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa in Venice (2013); Future Farmers A.I.R. in San Francisco (2012), and Botkyrka AIR in Stockholm (2011).
She has also won several awards, including: Cantica21 (2020) sponsored by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Culture; the 7th Italian Council Award (2019), sponsored by the Ministry of Culture; the XVII Ermanno Casoli Award (2018); the STEP Beyond Travel Grant (2018); the OnBoard Prize, VISIO Young Talent Acquisition Prize, Florence (2016), the Eneganart Prize, Florence (2016); Illycaffè Research Grant for UNIDEE, Pistoletto Foundation, and the program nctm e l’arte (2015); Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Foundation Prize (2015). She is also a recipient of the Lerici Foundation grant, Italian Cultural Institute in Stockholm (2012). Mazzi is currently taking a practical PhD in Visual Arts at Villa Arson – Université Côte-d’Azur in Nice.