Rome

Former mobster's paintings unveiled at Rome exhibition

Painter Gaspare Mutolo turned to art after life of crime

Former mobster's paintings unveiled at Rome exhibition

Rome, January 15 - Paintings by former mobster Gaspare Mutolo, who turned state witness against some of Italy's bloodiest gangsters, will soon be on display in a tiny gallery in Rome's trendy Monti neighbourhood. The exhibition, beginning Friday at Baccina 66 gallery, will likely draw more attention for the artist than for his work. Mutolo was one of the first mafia insiders who told police about the connections between the Cosa Nostra and Italian politicians. His statements helped them better understand the context in which anti-mafia magistrates Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino were assassinated in deadly explosions in 1992 He also became a confidante of Toto Riina, the future boss of the Corleonesi now serving multiple life prison sentences for those and other murders. The exhibition will feature more than 30 oil paintings, many depicting Mutolo's beloved Sicily, from which he is exiled. Most were painted from his prison cell and art critic Fulvio Abbate said his unhappiness there contributed to his work, perhaps becoming a survival technique.

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