May 2023: Contemporary art exhibitions with neon

May 2023: Contemporary art exhibitions with neon

sunday 30 april 2023 | Art, Events, Blog, News&Press
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Neon is a light source that is more than a hundred years old. It began as a scientific discovery and was then used worldwide as a luminous sign. In recent decades it has also increasingly come to life as an element of contemporary art.
Would you like to visit some exhibitions dedicated to neon or see artworks handcrafted from real neon? Then you can't miss our May 2023 calendar!





Bari – And then an insurmountable tension, to the level of an incommensurability

Where: Palazzo San Giuseppe, via Mulini 2, Polignano a Mare (Bari – Italy)
When: 18 March - 30 May 2023
Days and hours: Saturday and Sunday, 18.00-21.00

Artist with neon work: Daniela Corbascio - "untitled" 2023

Event: Like A Little Disaster presents "And then an insurmountable tension, to the level of an incommensurability", a group exhibition involving twenty-five artists brought together to create a scenario decolonised from the human being, inhabited by hybrid objects/subjects, resistant to any definitive classification or definition. The project is configured as a panorama structured by multiple tentacular connections that are never completely closed, capable of setting in motion unexpected, unpredictable and uncontrollable consequences.

Neon artwork: The presence of the white and livid blue neon tubes that the artist has positioned emphasises the disturbing aspect of the skins.
Man and nature in a continuous alternation of conflict and alliance, proliferating chimeras, questioning the concepts of subjectification, objectification and subjection, the classification of beings and the hierarchy of actors and values.

Daniela Corbascio. Neon, F/ART neon transformer, iron, fur coats. Dimensioni ambientali, 2023.
"E poi una tensione insormontabile, fino all'incommensurabilità", curated by Like A Little Disaster, Palazzo San Giuseppe, Polignano a Mare. Photo Credit Like A Little Disaster.



Brescia - Expect More. Massimo Uberti

Where: Pusterla Vineyard, Brescia

When: 19 April - site-specific permanent work

Installation: EXPECT MORE is part of the project La Via delle Sorelle (The Way of the Sisters) that joins Bergamo and Brescia through a route of about 130 kilometres along the naturalistic territory of the two provinces.
Art is light that accompanies us along a path of growth and encounter, of research and progress: we must ask for more, from ourselves in the first place, to overcome borders and barriers, we can do this while respecting the uniqueness of each living being and the nature that hosts us. EXPECT MORE is an invitation to go beyond the immediate and open up to discovery, a promise of greater expectations towards reality and oneself.
Massimo Uberti's project, curated by Ilaria Bignotti in collaboration with Camilla Remondina, is commissioned by Cherubini S.p.A. and hosted by the Monte Rossa company within the Pusterla Vineyard, as part of the La Via delle Sorelle project, coordinated by Slow Ride Italy.

Artist: Massimo Uberti made his debut in the early 1990s after his experience as a member of the group of artists of the Lazzaro Palazzi space in Milan.
Space, light and surface are the elements he has always placed at the centre of his research to shape works that fit into the territory and create parallel, unreal places that temporarily redesign the landscape. An illusory place full of suggestions that confronts reality, forming a present time in which one stops to reflect and think or more simply to dream, a space "for poetic inhabitants".

Expect More (3x12m) – Neon Art by Massimo Uberti. PH: M. de Luca



Milan - Orizzonti Luminosi Exhibition in the dark. Secursat

Where: Secursat - Corso Monforte 36, Milan
When: 18 April - 30 May 2023
Entrance: free by appointment

Exhibition: Orizzonti Luminosi - mostra al buio is a collective path illuminated by the works of different artists, who through their art "reveal" not only a heterogeneous exhibition path, but also, a message addressed to the future and a deep reflection on the present. International contemporary artists, also active in France, England, the United States and China, attentive to the themes of sustainability and innovation, who through their art and their works will convey a message of hope and a different way of interpreting the present in the light of a more inclusive, sustainable and up-to-date future: Massimo Catalani, Mario Carlo Iusi, Vincenzo Marsiglia, Giangaetano Patanè, Domenico Pellegrino, Giulio Rigoni and Edward Spitz.

Works to illuminate, /the-lu-mi-nà-re/, in the sense of revealing, making clear, visible to all, the importance of spreading an ethical and sustainable message.

Neon work: Prospect by Vincenzo Marsiglia




Parma – Resteranno solo le fiamme. Studio Tonnato

Where: Parma, Ex Cinema Trento, via Trento 1
When: 19 April - October 2023
Hours and days: Every day from 6 pm to 5 am

Artists: Studio Tonnato is a collective of two members, Federico Leoni (Brescia, 1991) and Giordano Magnani (Parma, 1994) formed in early 2017. Both students graduated from the Venice Academy of Fine Arts and are currently working in Venice. The duo is present on the recent contemporary art scene, especially related to art experienced and interpreted through the filter of the digital. Studio Tonnato's research has folk as its starting point, then transforming it through the creation of divergent imagery and translating it into installations, performances, video, print and internet.

Artwork: The neon work by the Studio Tonnato collective, composed of Federico Leoni and Giordano Magnani, was inaugurated on 19 April at the former Trento cinema in Parma. Realised in collaboration with the municipality of Parma and the technical partnership of F/ART, world leader in the production of transformers for cold cathode lamps, the work was produced in the context of Parma Capital of Culture 2020+1 thanks to the Temporary Sign call.
The work is made with the help of Neon Susegana's craftsmen and illuminates a part of the city usually left on the margins. The neon represents a kiss enveloped in flames, a symbol of love and rebirth, and with its light it immerses that part of the city in a new guise, creating a surreal atmosphere and inviting us to look at the urban space with different eyes.

Resteranno le fiamme. Studio Tonnato / Photo: Nachovisual / F/ART as technical partner



Rome –  Infinity. Michelangelo Pistoletto

Where: Chiostro del Bramante (Rome)
When: 18 March - 15 October 2023
Hours and days: Monday to Friday 10 am - 8 pm, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays 10 am - 9 pm
Admission: subject to payment (junior 10€, Monday to Friday 15€, Saturday and Sunday 18€)

Artist: Michelangelo Pistoletto (Biella, 1933)

Exhibition: Fifty works and four large site-specific installations. More than 60 years of art, almost 90 years of life.
A narrative journey, a story, an art experience that through the iconic works of Michelangelo Pistoletto (Biella, 1933) - from the historic to the most recent, from 1962 to 2023 - accompanies us on an exciting journey inside the poetics and the many worlds of one of the masters of contemporary art.
An infinity of ways of making art, an infinity of ways of seeing, of changing perspective, of reading reality. At the centre a single artist but in his many possibilities of being, of transforming, of depicting and representing, of telling. This is why, at the Chiostro del Bramante, Michelangelo Pistoletto is INFINITY: because art is without limits.

Neon work: Love Difference-neon (2005 - 2023), a light installation composed of twenty neon signs and presented for the first time at the Venice Biennale, where the artist received the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement.







Chicago – Love, Neon

Where: Ken Saunders Gallery, 2041 West Carroll Avenue, Suite C-320, Chicago, IL 60612
Opening time: Saturday 11-3pm and by appointment
Tickets: free

Artists: Works by James Akers, John Bannon, Jacob Fishman, Annesta Le, Zoelle Nagib, Jason Pickleman, Michael Young.

Exhibition: Neon is sending you a message. "Love is in the Air. Pretend to Unsown Gardens". Love, Neon

JOHN BANNON. What It’s For, 2020 (neon)



Glendale (CA) – Oliver B. Nowlin: Lightning’s Lung

Where: 216 S. Brand Blvd. Glendale, CA 91204
When: 24 February – 27 August 2023
Opening: 4 March 2023 from 6 to 8 pm

Artist: Oliver Nowlin’s work mines his personal narrative and diverse interests. He abstracts stories from his life by conveying them through geometric forms, texture, color, mark-making, and light. The found objects that Nowlin occasionally integrates into his sculptural form (cardboard packaging and beer can decals) are transformed through sculptural and painterly interventions. Inspirations for the works range from his time in the Navy during the Vietnam war; his family; when he witnessed lightning hitting the ground while camping as a child; his time fishing along the LA River; and his son.

Exhibition: Exhibition showcases wall-based sculptures made over the last 3 decades by the 81- year-old artist

Museum: The Museum of Neon Art is the only museum in the world devoted exclusively to art in electric media, exhibiting electric and kinetic fine art, and outstanding examples of historic neon signs, for over three decades.
Neon is a gateway between scientific principles and artistic expression. Neon illumination integrates electrical technology, creative design, and fundamental concepts of physics and chemistry.


Oliver B. Nowlin: Lightning’s Lung. Courtesy of MONA



New York – Marie Watt. Singing Everything

Location: MARC STRAUS, 299 Grand Street, New York, NY
Opening time: March 12th, 2023
Tickets: free

Artist: Marie Watt holds an MFA in painting and printmaking from Yale University, and she attended Willamette University and the Institute of American Indian Arts. In 2016, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from Willamette University. Watt’s work has recently been shown at The Whitney Museum in the exhibition Making Knowing: Craft in Art, 1950–2019; the Seattle Art Museum in the exhibition American Art: The Stories We Carry; the Yale University Art Gallery in Place, Nations, Generations, Beings: 200 Years of Indigenous North American Art; the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists, amongst others. Upcoming shows include Many Wests: Artists Shape an American Idea at the Smithsonian American Art Museum this summer. Watt was born and raised in Seattle, Washington, and currently resides in Portland, Oregon. Watt’s work is part of major museum collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art; The Whitney Museum of American Art; the National Gallery of Art; Cornell University; Yale Art Gallery; Princeton University; the Portland Art Museum; the Smithsonian; Seattle Art Museum; US Library of Congress; Denver Art Museum; Crystal Bridges Museum; Rose Art Museum; the Heard Museum; the National Gallery of Canada; the Detroit Art Institute; amongst many others.

Exhibition: MARC STRAUS is proud to present Singing Everything, our second solo exhibition with interdisciplinary American artist Marie Watt. A member of the Seneca Nation, Watt also has German-Scott ancestry. Her layered and complex influences include Indigenous knowledge and Iroquois proto-feminism, the matriarchal structures of certain Native American nations, the rise of social activism throughout the 20th century, and the anti-war and anti-hate content of the 1960s and 1970s music scene.

When entering the gallery, the visitor is greeted by a sweeping, 24-foot-long neon sign spelling out the words “deer, skywalker, heron, bass, great lake, woodland, beaver, turtle, wolf, lowly, muskrat, rat” in various hues that evoke the sky on the horizon during sunset and sunrise. While the piece represents a new direction in Watt’s work, she views neon as an extension of beadwork. The glass itself is at once thread and bead, and both neon and beads have a relationship to trade. They both envelop light, color, and sound, embodying sunrises and sunsets on the horizon.

Courtesy of the Artist and MARC STRAUS



Tacoma – She Bends: Redefining Neon Legacy

Where: Museum of Glass. 1801 Dock Street, Tacoma, WA 98402
When: 11 February – October 2023
Opening Celebration: February 11 – 5:30pm-8pm
Days: 10am-5pm, Wednesday - Sunday. Third Thursday of every month, 5am-8pm, free admission
Tickets: $18 - Adults; $16 - Seniors (65+)/College Students (18+)/Military (Active and Veteran); $10 - Children (6–18); Free - Children (under 6); Free - Museum Members; $1/person; $2/family - EBT Cardholders

Artists: Sarah Blood, Carissa Grace, Kacie Lees, Stephanie Sara Lifshutz, Victoria Ahmadizadeh Melendez, Meryl Pataky, Lily Reeves, Daniella Thach, and Jude Abu Zaineh.

She Bends: She Bends explores the evolution of neon teaching methodologies in the traditionally male-dominated art form, and the transition of the medium from an agent of advertising and commercial signage to fine art. She Bends aims to push the boundaries of neon and is dedicated to building a more equitable future for the art form through public education, curatorial projects, and artist programs.

Exhibition: In addition to the process of neon and the importance of women and gender-expansive artists in the medium’s history, visitors will learn about the intersection between art and science, the commercial history of the material, and its emergence as a more personal art form. Much of the exhibited work is not only a response to neon’s commercial origins, but an exploration of themes of cultural identity, healing, or political activism. Additionally, since neon is a “master/apprentice” craft, the exhibition’s curators are focused on how neon skills are passed on and how the material’s legacy evolves.

Museum: Located in Tacoma, Washington, Museum of Glass is a premier contemporary art museum dedicated to glass and glassmaking with the West Coast’s largest and most active museum glass studio. Opened in 2002, the Museum has established a reputation for hosting impactful and engaging artist residencies, organizing nationally traveling exhibitions, and creating unique programs for visitors while building a growing permanent collection chronicling the development of modern and contemporary glass.


Daniella Thach (Cambodian American, born 1998). As An Aspara, 2020. Krypton, transformer, digital projection, and artificial intelligence; 60 in. Courtesy of the artist.




Are you an artist working with real neon or a gallery hosting artworks made with cold cathode lamps and would you like to be published in F/ART's neon art column?

Contact us by sending us a press kit and photos of your installation, you could be featured in the next article!