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Mostra LUCE DI PARADISO – padre Costantino Ruggeri

Exhibition LIGHT OF PARADISE - Father Costantino Ruggeri


"The how much and the which of that cheerfulness
Between collages and stained glass, the research of Father Costantino Ruggeri

pavia, Palazzo del Broletto, Sala discover - from 19 December 2023 to 31 January 2024

The exhibition hours will be as follows:
- Friday to Sunday from 17.00 to 19.30
- Thursday mornings from 10 a.m. to 12 noon
- Monday to Friday the exhibition can also be visited by appointment

The exhibition will host a glass craftsman who will demonstrate techniques to schools and interested parties;
will be present on Fridays 12-19-26 January 2024 from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and 2 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.

In canto XXX of Paradise, of the Divine Comedy, Dante saw a river of light that suddenly took on a circular shape, like a lake. It was the celestial rose of the angels and the blessed united by the same, unique joy around the radiance of God.

This exhibition offers an immersion of sight and mind into the exuberant imagery of the collages of Father Costantino Ruggeri (1925-2007), Franciscan friar, priest, and world-famous artist of vast and multiform production. In the links he established between collages and stained glass windows, in many churches in Italy and abroad, the powerful religiosity of his Franciscan spirituality emerges with spontaneous freshness. With the stained-glass windows, for which the collages were largely a preparation, he produced an overflowing and vital river of coloured light, rich in reverberations and mysterious messages, leading to the joyful experience narrated by Dante in Canto XXX of Paradise in the Divine Comedy.

The sequence of wall panels first guides the visitor to a preliminary and synthetic knowledge of the artist, his training, and his arrival at the Pavia convent of Canepanova; it then presents two large sections, one comprising the documentary corpus of collages and the other that of stained-glass windows, separated by the brief interlude of panels dedicated to Matisse and Vence, a master and work of reference that was meditated on for a long time but not imitated. On display in the showcases is a series of collages extracted from the 37 folders in which his father wanted them to be collected. A facsimile of the book he composed, based on a printed publication, to explore the famous Chapel of Vence can be leafed through by visitors. A sketch of a stained-glass window gives an insight into Father Ruggeri's stained-glass construction method. Short films introduce visitors to a first-hand knowledge of the father and the convent world in which he worked. The exhibition is the result of a long-term collaboration with members of the Pavia-based Fondazione Frate Sole and the Studio Ricerca Arte Sacra, heirs to the heritage and custodians of the father's memory. It seemed opportune and advantageous to be able to develop the story of the inventions between collages and stained-glass windows at the same time in two locations, in Pavia and Cesano Maderno, according to a direction that would restore the complementary nature of its contents on the basis of a single interpretative structure, with an appropriate dosage between distinct and identical panels. It was therefore decided to qualify the Pavia 'section' as a workshop exhibition and the one in Cesano Maderno as a documentary exhibition.

Father Constantine liked to perceive and make people perceive the joyful harmony of creation and redeemed men by inventing figures, now easier now more mysterious and always changing, with simple scraps of coloured paper. Like Matisse, he liked to make this childish game with scissors the moment of genesis of an art made of light. Perhaps he realised that, in the game, that joy brought by the angels to the shepherds on the night of the Saviour's birth exploded within him.

Premiazione vincitori Premio Internazionale Tesi di Laurea ‘Costantino Ruggeri’

Award ceremony for the winners of the 'Costantino Ruggeri' International Thesis Award

La Brother Sun Foundation takes place since 1996 an active role in the promotion and at Awareness of Sacred Architecture in the architectural landscape contemporary.

At the end of the third edition of the quadrennial International Prize for Sacred Architecture, the Frate Sole Foundation felt the desire to extend the opportunity for comparison to those who have begun to take their first steps in such a vast and still in many ways unexplored field as Sacred Architecture.

The 'Frate Sole' award was therefore also aimed at young architects who had dedicated their degree research to the design of new churches; the Sacred Architecture Prize for Degree Theses was thus established, in its first edition in 2005.

The complexity of the problems inherent in the architectural design of ecclesiastical spaces is such that it is difficult to achieve an ideal synthesis of all the components that make up a church building. Undoubtedly among all of them is the poetic inspiration that makes an architecture the sacred place of mystical exaltation, of the preciousness of the mystery that is lived within liturgical dynamics with a precise community and in a particular place.

The commitment with which the theme of sacred architecture was approached by the students was often significant, and it is meaningful to think that so many young architects, at the end of their university studies, had the will to try their hand at such a fascinating subject.

With these objectives the Costantino Ruggeri International Thesis Award was organised by the Frate Sole Foundation in Pavia, and awarded every two years to a Christian worship church project that is the subject of a master's thesis.

In previous editions, the Prize received 300 entries from international Faculties of Architecture.

The 'Costantino Ruggeri' International Thesis Award is aimed at young people, and it is with the audience of young people, high school and university students, that it intends to dialogue.

I reported of the 'Costantino Ruggeri' International Thesis Award 2023 are:

  • Mauro SerafinFrancesco Da Ros for the Regina Pacis Temple in Giavera del Montello (TV)developed in the university IUAV of Venice with arch. Pierantonio Val as rapporteur and Fr Mirco Miotto as a liturgist co-rapporteur.
  • Dmitri Lisiifor a orthodox spirituality centre in Corso di Porta Ticinese in Milan near the basilica of San Lorenzo Maggiore, developed at the Milan Polytechnic with arch. Giancarlo Floridi as rapporteur.

La training and the dialogue between academics e high schoolers will be the themes of the next AWARD DAY of International Thesis Award 'Costantino Ruggeri' 2023.

l reported projects in this edition of the International Thesis Award 'Costantino Ruggeri' were, between September and November, the basis for an ideas competition which involved the classes of Artistic high schools e CAT of the Secondary Schools in the Province of Pavia.

This ideas competition is developed in accordance with the Higher Secondary Schools in the Province of Pavia and sees involved the Brother Sun Foundation - with President arch. Luigi Leoni and the Awards Coordinator arch. Andrea Vaccari, theANCE Pavia - with President ing. arch. Alberto Righini, the Director Rag. Viviana Montagna, and the President of the Group of Young Building Contractors of the Province of Pavia Ing. Alessandro Ottone, the Faculty of Engineering, University of Pavia - with Prof. Roberto De Lotto.

L'intent of this competition is uniting two realities several.

CAT and Liceo Artistico students approach a specific subject with the means proposed by the school didactics and with their work they confront the university world. In this respect, themeeting high school students with the award-winning architects during this cultural and educational moment.

The winning students of the CAT and Liceo Artistico competition will have the opportunity to getting to know and visiting churches designed by Costantino Ruggeri.

Afterwards the programme in the morning of Tuesday 12 December 2023:

Palazzo del Broletto - Conference Room

Moderator. Dr. Alessandro Beltrami

  • 9.30
    - start and institutional greetings
  • 10.00
    - intervention arch. Paolo Russo (Boeri studio) - The challenge of sustainable development in contemporary architecture
  • 10.30
    - speech Prof. Roberto De Lotto (University of Pavia) - The city and its symbols
  • 11.00
    - presentation of the 'Costantino Ruggeri' International Thesis Award           
    - Award ceremony for the two commended projects and presentation by the designers of the two works
  • 11.40
    - presentation of the Architecture and Design Secondary School Award
    - Award ceremony for winning students, presentation of winning projects and dialogue with the two winners of the Thesis Award

Palazzo del Broletto - Conference Room

  • 13.00
    - exhibition opening

A exhibition of participating projects at the 1st edition of the Costantino Ruggeri International Thesis Award and the ideas competition which involved the classes of Artistic high schools e CAT of the Secondary Schools in the Province of Pavia, remains open until Sunday 17 December 2023 at the Discover Space, on the ground floor of the Palace of the Broletto in Pavia with entrance from Piazza della Vittoria.

convegno – Cultura dell’incontro

conference - Culture of encounter


pavia, church Santi Giacomo e Filippo - saturday 26 november 2022, 9.00/13.30

La Brother Sun Foundation at 15th Year of Ascension to Heaven of its Founder, Father Costantino Ruggeri, organises a conference open to technicians, experts and friends on the topic 'Culture of encounter'as expressed in theEncyclical of Pope Francis'Brothers all'.

The word 'culture' indicates something that has penetrated into the people, into their deepest convictions and way of life. If we speak of a 'culture' in the people, it is more than an idea or an abstraction. It encompasses the desires, enthusiasm and ultimately a way of life that characterises that human group. So, to speak of a 'culture of encounter' means that, as a people, we are passionate about wanting to meet, seeking points of contact, building bridges, planning something that involves everyone. This has become an aspiration and a way of life. The subject of such a culture is the people, not a sector of society that aims to keep the rest at peace by professional and media means. (FT, para. 216)

The subject was addressed by Father Costantino Ruggeri from the end of the 1970s and throughout the decade of the 1980s in the Franciscan mission of the Burundiwhere he was called upon to build, with architect. Luigi Leoni, three religious and social complexes.

The time spent in Africa was an opportunity to meet a people and one culture which turned out to be rich in extraordinary human valuescelebrating the beauty of the community. From this experience, Father Costantino drew a commitment not to transfer pre-packaged models, foreign to local culture and traditions, and to create spaces with the face and heart of the land in which he was commissioned to design.

He hoped that the contribution made would give rise to new shapes and volumes inspired by the dwellings and ways of life of the Barundi.

Prophetically, he dreamed that on the same continent could be born who, like the winner of the Pritzker Prize 2022 Diébédo Francis Kéréinterpreting the authentic aspirations of the African population, created spaces designed with the sensitivity of the local community in mind.

L'intense cultural exchange allowed Father Constantine to bring with him into his artistic and human life the sensitivity he had developed during his experience in Burundi: it was enough to enter his studio to enjoy the dozens of masks, sculptures and African handicrafts that enlivened the memory of the communities he met.

The Conference 'Culture of encounter - Fr. Constantine's mission in Africa".sponsored by the Municipality of Pavia and ICOMOS PRERICO (Places of Religion and Ritual), will take place Saturday 26 November 2022 from 9:00 to 13:30 in Paviaat the Church of St James and St Philip in Via Luigi Porta.

Speakers will be:

Luigi LeoniPresident of the Brother Sun Foundation;
Msgr. Luca BressanEpiscopal Vicar for Culture of the Diocese of Milan;
Maria Antonietta Crippalecturer Politecnico di Milano;
Fr Roberto Tagliaferrilecturer at the St Justine Institute of Pastoral Liturgy in Padua;
Ferdinando Zanzotteralecturer Politecnico di Milano.

He will moderate Olimpia Niglio, lecturer at the University of Pavia.

At the end of the conference, the Frate Sole Foundation will be pleased to share a convivial moment at theOsteria del Collegioat 8 Via Luigi Porta.

Un cammino di splendore: il Miracolo della Visione

A Path of Splendour: The Miracle of the Vision

A cinematic journey in stages by Roberto Figazzolo

The review was born in the wake of the The Park of Splendour: Pavia, Certosa and Belgioioso on the Paths. Knowledge, Identity and Discovery of Famous and Undiscovered Places, supported by the Lombardy Region in the framework of the Integrated Cultural Plans (PIC).

Prior to each of these films, videomaker Roberto Figazzolo will present and screen clips 'that miraculously combine faith and architecture, philosophy and beauty, rigour and expressive richness':

29 April 18:30 - Ricotta (Italy 1963) by Pier Paolo Pasolini (35′)
Short films: - Tadao Ando and the Frate Sole Foundation: analysis of an award by Remo Dorigati
- Alvaro Siza and the Church of Santa Maria de Marco de Canaveses (part one)

6 May 18:30 - Andrej Rublev (USSR 1969) by Andrej Tarkovskij (185′)
Short film: Alvaro Siza and the Church of Santa Maria de Marco de Canaveses (part two)

13 May 18:30 - The Seventh Seal (Sweden 1957) by Ingmar Bergman (95′)
Short film: John Pawson's Novi Dvur Monastery Vice Prior Romaric in Czech Republic (part one)

20 May 18:30 - The Blue Trail (Italy 2022) by Gabriele Vacis (90′)
Short film: John Pawson's Novi Dvur Monastery Vice Prior Romaric in Czech Republic (part two)

"In the spring of 2012, on the occasion of the 5th edition of the International Prize for Sacred Architecture organised by the Frate Sole Foundation of Pavia, I was sent to Rome, Porto in Portugal and Novi Dvur in the Czech Republic to collect images and testimonies from the winners of the first four editions of the internationally renowned 'Oscar of Sacred Architecture' held in Pavia every four years.

The experience was very engaging. Especially in Porto and the Czech Republic with the interviews with archistar Alvaro Siza and Friar Romaric, deputy prior of the Novi Dvur Monastery.

In both cases, the very simple, almost Franciscan approach to the subject led the two protagonists to take part in a dense and iconic dialogue, rich in suggestions and very sincere at the same time.

Only after almost ten years, as if through a long distillation process, can I now present these five pills that miraculously combine faith and architecture, philosophy and beauty, rigour and expressive richness."

Text by Roberto Figazzolo.

Tickets are available for purchase: via the online ticket office or at the physical ticket office of the Cineteatro Politeama in Pavia, Corso Cavour 20, which opens half an hour before each screening and on Saturday and Sunday from 15.30 to 21.00

Single ticket 4€ - Subscription to 4 films 10€

Press review:
La Provincia Pavese

Koinè 2021

Koine 2021

La Brother Sun Foundation was invited to participate in Koinèthe international religious art fair, which will be held in Vicenza from 24 to 26 October 2021.

The Frate Sole Foundation will actively participate with meetings and exhibitions:

Monday 25 at 17.30 will discuss the Frate Sole Sacred Architecture Awards with
. Mons. Fabrizio Capanni of Pontifical Council for Culture
. arch. Luigi LeoniPresident of the Brother Sun Foundation
. the winner of the2020 edition (Prize for built churches) arch. Axel Frühauf
. the winner of theedition 2021 (Prize for churches designed during university theses) arch. Francesco Menegato;

Sunday 24 to Tuesday 26 with works of Father Constantine in the dedicated exhibition areas:
. OBJECTS FOR LITURGICAL USE European production scenario;
. THE GLORIOUS MISSIONARY CROSS contemporary interpretations;
. THE LIGHT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT contemporary European stained glass and mosaics;
. THE 'FRIAR SUN' SACRED ARCHITECTURE AWARD Projects, sketches from major editions.

19 dicembre 2020 – ore 17.30 presentazione volume

19 December 2020 - 5.30 p.m. book presentation


The 19 December from 17.00 at 6.30 p.m. the Brescia Diocesan Museumin collaboration with the Brother Sun Foundation, hosts in webinar mode the Presentation of the book 'Father Costantino Ruggeri Franciscan artist'. (Silvana Editoriale), a volume (edited by Prof. Maria Antonietta Crippa) collecting the works of the multifaceted Brescian artist.
It will be an in-depth look at the artistic career of Father Constantine, painter, sculptor and builder of more than 30 churches; a true innovator of sacred art and the creator of the Frate Sole Foundation.

The webinar can be followed on the Facebook of the Brother Sun Foundation
For those who want to follow it from the platform Zoomyou must register with the secretariat:

Speakers will be:
Msgr. Gabriele Filippini - Director of the Brescia Diocesan Museum
Arch. Luigi Leoni - President of the Frate Sole Foundation of Pavia
Prof. Maria Antonietta Crippa - Curator, Lecturer Politecnico di Milano
Prof. Giorgio Azzoni - Lecturer at the SantaGiulia Academy of Fine Arts in Brescia

Alberto Cividati - Art Direction Diocesan Museum of Brescia

For information and registration:




The Frate Sole Foundation, in collaboration with the other organisers: Archdiocese of MilanContemporary Churches RouteISAL - Institute for the History of Lombardy Art, proposes un series of five meetings per theme the works and figure of Father Costantino Ruggeri swill take place according to this programme, starting from Thursday 10 December 2020 and will be held on Thursdays from 17.30 to 19.00 on zoom platform at the link:
Meeting ID: 414 217 5446 - Passcode: 1EYGtE

  1. First meeting - Thursday 10 December 2020, 17.30-19.00 hrs.

Speeches by: Maria Antonietta Crippa, Luigi Leoni, Chiara Rovati and conclusions by Don Umberto Bordoni

  1. Second meeting - Thursday, 14 January 2021, 5.30 p.m. - 7 p.m.

Speeches by: Virtus Zallot, Fra Maggiorino Stoppa, Paolo Campiglio and conclusions by Pietro Petraroia

  1. Third meeting - Thursday 4 February, 5.30 p.m. - 7 p.m.

Interventions by: Francesca Porreca, Andrea Vaccari, Ferdinando Zanzottera and conclusion by Leonardo Frigerio and Federico Gangi

  1. Fourth meeting - Thursday 25 February, 17.30-19.00

Speeches by: Maria Antonietta Crippa, Luigi Leoni, Andrea Longhi, Don Fabio Verga and conclusions by Carlo Capponi

  1. Fifth meeting - Thursday 18 March, 17.30-19.00:

Speeches by: Giorgio Azzoni, Clara Quaianni, Luigi Leoni and conclusions by Carlo Penati

17 luglio 2020 – ore 18.00 inaugurazione mostra

17 July 2020 - 6 p.m. exhibition opening

'From matter to form'
Unpublished works by Costantino ruggeri

Seventy works by Costantino Ruggeri realised at the turn of the 1960s and 1970s.

They are at the heart of the monographic exhibition on the artist friar proposed by thePavia City Council Culture Department in collaboration with the Brother Sun Foundation. Saturday 18 July the opening in the exhibition space at the Broletto in Pavia; the exhibition will remain and can be visited until 4 October.

The title is "From matter to form“.

The works show interesting proximities with the successful poverist current founded by the critic Germano Celant recently passed away.'Matter becomes form' marks the birth of the Arte Povera movement in 1967 baptised by the art critic himself, who characterises it with these words: " reducing signs to their minimum, in impoverishing them to their archetypes".

In the historic exhibition entitled 'Arte povera - Im Spazio' held at the La Bertesca Gallery in Genoa, Celant presents the artists and the theoretical foundation of the new current that stands outside the art system. The names of Fabro, Bignardi, Boetti, Kounellisto which will be added later Paladin, Merz and others.

The fledgling current is identified in these words: "First comes man, then comes the system".

"Celant speaks of a 'poor art, engaged with contingency, with the event, with the anthropological conception and with the real man," they explain at the Department of Culture. "The meeting point between the absolute of beauty and the relative of the forms in which it is indicated, represents an ever new starting point in the experience of an artist, difficult to express in words because it must be expressed in situations, essential signs, unpredictable openings, always new, in solutions as rigorous as they are free and liberal.

In this sense, the exhibition intends to valorise and promote the work of material recovery carried out by Costantino Ruggeri, a Franciscan friar but also an artist attentive to all the rupture movements that arose as a reaction to the socio-political climate of the 1970s.

Ruggeri graduated from the Brera Academy in 1962 and made friends with fellow students Roberto Crippa, Lucio Fontana, Gianni Dova, Marino Marini, Alberto Burri. Starting in 1964, Ruggeri developed a lively dialogue with matter, with walls, with spaces in relation to light. Through this research, Costantino arrives at the most humble materials: packaging cardboard, cellophane, thread, polystyrene, wooden boards that he finds in landfills and unused material deposits.

The first works from this period are the White Shapeselaborated with recycled objects that are striking for their essentiality. Followed by the Black Shapeswhich are rarer and act as a counterpoint to absolute white. But the most accomplished formulation of Costantino Ruggeri's innovative conception of sculpture can be identified with "Cells"three-dimensional works in which he uses thick cardboard by folding it into the shape of a parallelepiped, completely covered with a layer of plaster and white paint, which makes the artefact immaculate. - La Provincia Pavese, 9 July 2020 -

Pavia, Palace of Broletto, Contemporary Arts Space. 18 July to 4 October 2020.

The exhibition will be open every day from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.. Tuesday closed.

Free entry 

6 dicembre 2019 – ore 17.30 presentazione volume

6 December 2019 - 5.30 p.m. book presentation

Presentation of the volume
Father Costantino Ruggeri - Franciscan artist

Edited by Prof. Maria Antonietta Crippa 



Pavia, Friday 6 December 2019

Broletto Palace

Fireplace Hall 

5.30 p.m.

interventions by:

Don Umberto BordoniChristian art today
Prof. Paolo CampiglioThe Art of Fr. Constantine Ruggeri
Prof. Maria Teresa MazzilliThe cultural heritage of the Church Father
Father Pasquale GhezziA Franciscan artist

introduced and moderated by Dr. Alessandro Beltrami

Friday 6 December at 17.30 at the Sala del Camino at the Broletto in Paviain Piazza Vittoria, the edited volume 'Father Costantino Ruggeri - Franciscan artist' will be presented, by Prof. Maria Antonietta Crippa.

With this publication the Brother Sun Foundation pays tribute to its founder, great artist figure, Franciscan friar and priest who, in over sixty years of fervent activity, has dedicated himself with commitment and passion to thecontemporary sacred art in its many facets, through artistic research characterised by the joy typical of the Franciscan spirit.

A singular artist active throughout the second half of the 20th century until the beginning of the 21st, he left a legacy - in paintings, sculptures, liturgical furniture and furnishings, stained glass windows and churches - that testifies to his modern dialogue and skilful synthesis between contributions from the artistic avant-gardes of the 20th century and iconographic and symbolic innovations anchored in the Christian tradition.

This book aims to offer an initial historicisation, to which the following chorally contributed: Giorgio Azzoni, Carlo Cavallari, Maria Antonietta Crippa, Mario Favretto, Luigi Leoni, Roberta Manara, Massimo Ravazzano, Carmen Romagnano, Chiara Rovati, Nicoletta Scherillo, Andrea Vaccari, Virtus Zallot, Ferdinando Zanzottera.

The book is published by Silvana Editoriale, with contributions from the Cariplo Foundation and the Community Foundation of the Province of Pavia; it is sponsored by the Municipality of Pavia, the National Office for Ecclesiastical Cultural Heritage and Religious Buildings, the Province of St. Anthony of the Friars Minor, and the Diocese of Pavia; with the collaboration of the Institute for the History of Lombard Art.

6 dicembre 2019 – ore 19.00 inaugurazione mostra

6 December 2019 - 7 p.m. Exhibition opening

Friday 6 December 2019 the Brother Sun Foundation opens at the end of the presentation of the volume 'Father Costantino Ruggeri - Franciscan artist" a exhibition of paintings and photographs by Fr. Costantino Ruggeri at its institutional headquarters on the first floor of the Broletto Palace in Pavia at 21 Via Paratici.

It will be a convivial gathering where we can exchange holy Christmas greetings.

The exhibition will be open from Monday 9 to Friday 20 December 2019, according to the following hours: Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12.30 p.m.