«Extraordinary teacher and incomparable master», «inspirer and mentor» of young talent: this is how Stefano Tagliaferri and Giampiero Mongatti, respectively president and councilor for Culture (and then, from 2015, mayor of Barberino) of the Comunità Montana Mugello, defined him in L’arte dei palazzi e nelle piazza del Mugello (2011).
In all these years, he has devoted himself heart and soul to his “kids”, his students have always come before everything else, thus proving that, alongside the undisputed qualities of a great artist he also possesses those of an authentic, generous teacher and educator.
The primitive sculpture of Adriano Bimbi
What is surprising about Bimbi is his nonchalant, constant ability to combine the task of teaching with that main and vital job of being a sculptor. The ability to cultivate and develop that «ecstatic formalism», that «disenchanted monumentalism», that aptitude to «face modernity without hindrance, without lead in his wings» addressing the «minima of the visible daily routine» of which the art historian Antonio Paolucci spoke in Rocche e scultori contemporanei (2003):
Primitivism, first of all. Primitivism means that Adriano Bimbi, figurative artist, has chosen to use the language of before and always. Adriano’s human figures seem «remote founders of races, nations of concocted origins, thousands of miles removed from decadent artificial elegance».
The vision that underlies Bimbi’s closed and austere images flow from the pained awareness of an unfinished humanism which characterizes the tormented decades of the end of this millennium. The figurative landscape which is communicated through sculpture in a totally original way is added to the representation of man and woman.
It is the «stereometry of isolated houses», «rural pride, Tuscan», the «plasticity of sparse trees» and «fluid possibility of clouds» mentioned by the great art critic Enrico Crispolti in the aforementioned Più lontani da qui.
Born in Bibbona in 1952 Adriano studied at the Academy with Fernando Farulli, found his true mentor in Mario De Micheli, who in Le avanguardie artistiche del Novecento (1959) wrote:
The important thing is not to make something that was produced by the avant-garde into “taste” or “manner”
As in artistic production, each work must be autonomous and authentic and when teaching art, the teacher must first instruct the student to things by himself, to impose his own rules.