When a love of art and Italian food combine, the result is delizioso. In 2011, local entrepreneurs and Neapolitan food purveyors Bruno Cilio and Dario Cipollaro de l’Ero opened a combination restaurant and art gallery, PizzArte, located steps from the Museum of Modern Art.
PizzArte curator Sunny Shin, who also curates for Coohaus and Gallery Ho, rotates pieces for the gallery every four to six months, displaying pieces from prominent Italian and international artists. Two such talents are sculptors and painters Paola Romano, who has exhibited at the Venetian Biannual, and Lello Esponito, who has shown in the United States, Italy, and Spain.
The art features help PizzArte convey the restaurant’s emphasis on quality and craftsmanship. “The idea was to create a place that wasn’t just going to feed your stomach, but your mind,” said owner Bruno Cilio to a DNAinfo reporter. Cilio firmly believes that fine art should be experienced on more than just gallery walls. He views the restaurant as “less a business venture than a way to celebrate the art, food and traditions of home,” the article states.
PizzArte’s owners draw connections between the hand-painted art on the restaurant’s walls and the hand-made artisan pizzas in their kitchen. The hope is that customers will feel engaged with the work on display, “providing an opportunity to intimately engage with it and to have the feeling of actually living with art.”