Rizzoli Lizard (30/11/2021)

I am really excited! On November 30th, twenty years since the publication of Manhattan Unfurled and almost 26 years to the day from when I left Milan to move to New York, a journey of sorts is coming full circle: Rizzoli Lizard will publish the accordion-format book of Milan’s skyline titled Ecco Milano: Ritratto di una città che cambia, an homage to my hometown.

Sono molto emozionato! Il 30 novembre, vent’anni dopo la pubblicazione di Manhattan Unfurled e 26 anni (quasi) esatti da quando sono andato via da Milano per trasferirmi a New York, si chiude una sorta di cerchio: uscirà, edito da Rizzoli Lizard, il libro a concertina intitolato Ecco Milano: Ritratto di una città che cambia, un omaggio alla mia città natale.

Exactly twenty years ago today, on October 28th, 2001, CBS Sunday Morning aired a five-minute piece on Manhattan Unfurled. It was the result of a long collaboration with producer and writer Ed Forgotson, who had followed Matteo during more than a year while he worked on the project.

Both the filming of the actual interview and the final editing of the footage happened in the weeks right after September 11th, when the years-long project had profoundly changed in nature. The piece that aired on October 28th became an emotional homage to a skyline that was portrayed in a way that had just changed forever.

“But as for the real New York …” (at minute 4:15) is how Charles Osgood, who narrates and conducts the interview, begins the final section on the recently transformed Manhattan skyline.

Paul Goldberger, then architecture critic of the New Yorker magazine, also appears in the piece, offering his always illuminating insight. 

Random House, October 2001

Twenty years ago this month Random House published Manhattan Unfurled, a 22-foot-long accordion book with 2 drawings depicting the the east and west sides of Manhattan accompanied by a wonderful essay by Paul Goldberger.

The instant the book came out, it was already a memory of another era.

In Conversation with Dina Nayeri


Inventing Truth with Words and Lines

Whether in art or literature, what does it mean to tell the truth, or a version of the truth? And what might it mean to invent the truth in the service of a higher truth? Looking to Matteo Pericoli’s Windows On Elsewhere: 60 Refugees, 60 Views, a project with a collection of 60 window view drawings by Pericoli depicting the present window views of 60 persons who were forced to flee their countries, as well as looking to Dina Nayeri’s book, The Ungrateful Refugee, we will explore the role of invention (or “artful fudging” as Pericoli put it) in creation.

Bill Shipsey from Art for Amnesty and Alice McCrum from the American Library in Paris will moderate the conversation.

Free event. Click here to reserve a ticket. 


The American Library in Paris
10 Rue du Général Camou
75007 Paris

Camila Raznovich intervista Matteo Pericoli durante la puntata di Kilimangiaro (Rai 3) andata in onda lo scorso 22 Agosto.

Si parla di Finestre sull’altrove: 60 vedute per 60 rifugiati, il libro pubblicato di recente da Il Saggiatore, e di vari lavori di Matteo che, a partire dai disegni-rotoli dello skyline di New York e Londra, lo hanno portato a concentrarsi per anni a osservare, disegnare e raccontare le vedute dalle finestre. 


The official website of the Windows on Elsewhere project is online.

Windows on Elsewhere: 60 Refugees, 60 Views is a book, exhibition, and limited-edition print project with a collection of 60 window view drawings by Matteo Pericoli, depicting the present window views of sixty persons who were forced to flee their countries. The drawings are accompanied by short texts written by the refugees describing their journey from ‘elsewhere’ taking inspiration from their drawn window view.

On the surface, the drawings simply reveal the view of each refugee framed by their window. But as we read their accompanying words our attention turns inward and we get a glimpse of their past, their experiences, their emotions, and of the people, places, and stories left behind— inevitably blended with a seemingly everlasting, fleeting present.

The refugee participants in the book, who come from over thirty countries, describe what it feels like to be forced to abandon one’s home, one’s country, and, in many cases, one’s loved ones. Their stories are deeply personal and emotional and draw out the complexity, intensity and pain that are ingrained in a refugee’s journey.


The website was produced by Amnesty International Italia in collaboration with Art for Amnesty, producer of the project.  

Photographs from the opening of the Windows on Elsewhere exhibit at the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin (Italy)

(Courtesy of the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo)

Finally, after 3 years of work, “Windows on Elsewhere: 60 Refugees, 60 Views”, a project I worked on with Art for Amnesty, will be exhibited in Turin. The project is in support of Amnesty International Italia on the occasion of Amnesty’s 60th anniversary.

On Wednesday, May 26, the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo will inaugurate the exhibit of 60 drawings accompanied by 60 texts written by the refugees in which they share what they see from their windows, but also memories of their journeys, of what they have left behind and their hopes (the exhibit ends on July 28).

The following day, the book Finestre sull’altrove, 60 vedute per 60 rifugiati, published by Il Saggiatore will go on sale.The Lavazza Group has generously contributed by supporting the production of a series of limited edition box sets of the drawings and texts in Italian, English, French and Spanish (60 per language), which will be sold to benefit Amnesty.

Click here to visit the project’s official website.

I was recently at Lavazza’s headquarters in Turin for the installation of my sky(time)line mural drawing of the building site — from a fourth century Paleo-Christian basilica to an impressive 1800s power station, to the new “Nuvola” building.