rigore e libertà – contemporary italian jewelry

Rigore e Libertà (Rigore and Liberty) is an exhibition featuring three major Italian masters of contemporary jewelry: Mario Pinton, Francesco Pavan, and Giampaolo Babetto. The extensive exhibition of almost 150 pieces is being housed within the Marino Marini Foundation Museum in Pistoia, northwest of Florence, through March 24, 2019. Marino Marini taught Mario Pinton sculpture techniques, who in turn became a goldsmith and taught in Padova, where Pavan and Babetto studied under him, and a contemporary Padovan jewelry style was established within the popular art movements of the late 20th-century, continuing today.

A common thread of all three artists is the consideration of the purity of form, the equilibrium of proportion, the importance of geometry, and the use of materials as inspiration rather than for value. Along with gold, used for its technical qualities, the experimental use of non-precious materials such as plexiglass, resin, pigment, ebony, glass, niello, and other metals were combined.

The beautiful display is enhanced within the context of the Marino Marini Museum in the historic Palazzo Tau and adjoining chapel, with lovely frescoes. After an easy train ride from Florence and a short walk to the museum, I recently brought my SACI Jewelry Design students to this off-the-beaten-path gem. The drawings, paintings, and sculptures of Marini include a lighter, more personally-scaled selection than those at the Museo Marino Marini in Florence.

Rigore e Libertà – All’origine del gioiello contemporaneo italiano
Mario Pinton, Francesco Pavan, Giampaolo Babetto
Museo Marino Marini
Corso Silvano Fedi, 30 – Pistoia, ITALY


Hours: Tuesday – Saturday 11am-6pm, Sunday 2:30-7:30pm
Museum entrance: €3.50

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