In 1967 the critic Germano Celant defined as Arte Povera (“poor art”) the work of 13 world renowned young Italian artists. This work documents and explains the sculpture and installation work of these artists in the context of the critics who shaped it and the broader cultural framework of contemporaneous philosophers, film-makers and curators. The innovative works of the artists were lyrical, open-ended combinations of unlikely fragments – live horses wandering through a gallery, a slab of marble with a lettuce – giving the most banal materials a metaphysical dimension. The artists include Anselmo, Boetti, Calzolari, Fabro, Kounellis, Mario and Marisa Merz, Paolini, Pascali, Penone, Pistolleto, Prini and Zorio, many of whom have emerged as world class artists who continue to exhibit internationally. Their work and statements are published alongside contemporaneous texts by critics and other thinkers of their day.