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“…Back to school, Mickey Mouse!” by OZMO in Albisola, Italy

May 31, 2021
4 min read
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Urban artist OZMO just created a mural on the facade of the Istituto Comprensivo delle Albisole. The project was ideated by the Councillor for Culture and Education Simona Poggi and was realized with the contribution of the Fondazione A. De Mari

Thanks to this artistic intervention, Albisola once again confirms itself as a city that welcomes and develops the languages of contemporary art. Over the years, in fact, the Ligurian town has been a privileged meeting place between tradition and avant-garde, a fundamental destination for famous artists of the twentieth century.

For OZMO, this is the first artistic intervention on the wall of a school building in Europe, which among other things houses in its premises the only italian municipal school of ceramics .

Combining the suggestions arising during the elaboration of the work with meanings and images inscribed in the context, the artist created  an authentically site specific work.

In “.. Back to school, Mickey Mouse!”, this is the title of the mural, OZMO re-interprets a pharmaceutical vase of the Ligurian tradition. If the characteristic white-blu style that has made the city of Albisola famous all over the world is faithfully maintained, the original composition leaves room for a scene that evokes the pursuit of knowledge.

The classical sculpture of a woman, which is absorbed in reading, is depicted between two putti. On its left, the Verrocchio’s one seems reaching out to grab something while its pose encourages to look at multiple viewpoints; on its right, the Canova’s one takes the appearance of a Mickey Mouse with an unusual smile, causing wonder and estrangement.

The combination of artworks and elements that create short circuits and ambivalent readings has always characterized the research and production of OZMO. This is one of the ways through which the artist interrogates us and questions the images themselves.

‘Working in Albisola, a place historically linked to the passage of national and international masters has been an honor for me. Having the chance to create BAMBINI under …..“after an initial shyness, there was a great deal of involvement with a lot of ‘without filer questions ….

‘Now, Albisola has a new piece of public art, a Opera that artistically redefines the facade and the spaces of the school. (But not only that) Ozmo’s artistic intervention also left an exciting formative experience to all the students who had the opportunity to observe his creative practice and to discuss with him ‘ says the Councilor Simona Poggi

Born in Pontedera, Pisa, Ozmo made his first steps in the comics world, but since early 90s he soon moved his focus on writing and painting. In short time his tag would have become one of the most famous and respected ones in the Italian graffiti scene. A special reportage dedicated to Ozmo on ‘Aelle’ – the most famous urban culture underground mag in Italy – will consacrate him as one of the leading figure in the national underground writing scene.

The way Ozmo is combining painterly elements like figures, shapes, colors and the way the composition is being constructed suggest how thorough is the artist’s approach. References from popular culture, art history, and politics that are wisely appropriated contribute largely to both seriousness and humor of his works, as well as to their contemporaneity.

Check out below to see more photos of “…Back to school, Mickey Mouse!”

Photo credits: Anna Spirito

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