“The idea of the igloo came to me one night when we were discussing the exhibition. Marisa, Pistoletto, Boetti, and the others from Turin were there. We were talking and I said: ‘I want to make a hemisphere to support a load of earth.’ The written phrase was a long phrase by General Giáp. During that time, the situation in Vietnam was tragic, and I had been struck by those words, which I had read in a book: ‘If the enemy masses his forces he loses ground; if he scatters he loses strength.’ It is an extraordinary, insightful phrase that offers a glimpse into how things work. It is a pessimistic phrase, but it is directed at the enemy. But I interpreted it as though it were aimed at the individual too. It is tremendous, isn’t it? Because there is never a balance between the two zones, it is so static that it destroys itself.” —Mario Merz in conversation with Harald Szeemann
Published to coincide with the exhibition Igloos at the Pirelli HangarBicocca, curated by Vicente Todolí in collaboration with the Fondazione Merz, this volume outlines the multiple trajectories that led to one of Mario Merz’s most significant bodies of work: the igloos. Essays by Germano Celant, Lisa Le Feuvre, Pietro Rigolo, and Mariano Boggia complement a lavish array of illustrations and hitherto unpublished documents, including a 1974 interview with Merz conducted by Harald Szeemann, and a photographic reconstruction of the Igloos exhibition.