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Peter Greenaway
production dates

Milan, Italy
Palazzo Reale
16 April - 6 September 2008

Milan, Italy
Santa Maria delle Grazie
30 June 2008

Melbourne, Australia
Arts House
10 October - 8 November 2009

New York, USA
Park Avenue Armory
3 December 2010- 6 January 2011

On the occasion of Saloni 2008, British artist Peter Greenaway gives new life to the world's most celebrated masterpiece, merging an extraordinary wealth of languages including visual arts, cinema, poetry, music and some of the most cutting-edge new technologies. Saloni 2008 will open with the exceptionally innovative and pioneering event conceived by Greenaway, visionary artist and filmmaker who particularly enjoys Italy and its art history: presenting his audience with a surprising new take on Leonardo's Last Supper, Greenaway will create an inspiring multimedia event taking place in front of what is undoubtedly the world's most mysterious and influential piece of art.

Leonardo's masterpiece has survived both the fast natural ageing process caused by experimental painting techniques conceived by the artist and the many attempts to restore its initial aspect, as well as having outlasted bombings during World War II. The Biblical scene will come to new life under the spectator's eyes thanks to live projections of images and light bouncing on the very painted surface, accompanied by a soundscape of voices, music and noises. The performance will take place in the Refectory of the Dominican Friary in Santa Maria delle Grazie Church: on the very wall of the refectory, Leonardo portrayed the moment when Christ announces one of the apostle will betray him, causing disruption and dismay among them.

The audience will take turns in groups of twenty-five people at a time, because of the fragile conditions of the painting. The event will loop many times during the evening, outside the normal opening hours. To offer the same experience to a wider audience, thanks to a groundbreaking combination of sophisticated technology and craftsmanship, a perfect copy of the painting will be realized, a "clone" of the same size and scale, featuring the same exact characteristics and surface texture of the original, which will be on show in the Sala delle Cariatidi in Palazzo Reale during the week of Saloni. The project makes use of the most cutting-edge technologies ever applied to Leonardo's fresco, thanks to an international team of collaborators coordinated by Change Performing Arts.
A digital photographic image of Leonardo's masterpiece was realized by Hal9000, featuring a degree of resolution never reached before; moreover, the Central Institute for Restoration in Rome has provided the 3D scanning of the Refectory in Santa Maria delle Grazie Church. Combining the digital information with the expertise of professional restorers, Factum Arte - directed by Adam Lowe - is realizing the "clone" of Leonardo's painting.

Reiner van Brummelen - director of photography and collaborator in many of Greeenaway's cinematic projects - has worked with the British filmmaker on the design of the event, supported by Stereomatrix and V-Factory - Change Performing Arts' digital media department - and especially by Euphon/Mediacontech Group, Italian leader in digital technologies applied to the media and communications industry. The event is produced by Change Performing Arts with the artistic direction of Franco Laera.



A project by
Change Performing Arts
and Superintendency for Architectural and Natural Heritage of Milan
in collaboration with Municipality of Milan / Culture Council
supported by Central Restoration Institute, Superintendency for Historical
and Etno-anthropological Heritage of Milan, Stereomatrix, Factum Arte, Hal9000, Euphon/Mediacontech Group, V-Factory

Curator Franco Laera
Visual Design Reinier van Brummelen
Music Marco Robino
Performed by Architorti
Sound editing Stefano Scarani, Huibert Boon
Facsimile/Clone production Factum Arte, Adam Lowe
with Bianca Nieto Gomez, Rafael Rachewsky, Michael Roberts, Piers Wardle
High-definition photography Haltadefinizione
Editing Irma de Vries
Digital Characters Sculptor Rod Seffen
Compositing Neda Gueorguieva