Pietro Ruffo was born in 1978 in Rome and later studied architecture there.
His paintings, drawings and sculptural installations reflect his intense social and moral concerns. His work uses large "maps" tracing the cultural and military influence of the world's imperial powers. Technical drawing and geographical maps are elaborated further through freehand drawing; his installations embrace both highly technical materials and an intensely manual practice.
The themes of colonialism and the desire for liberty led him to develop a project over the past year that addresses Isaiah Berlin, the Oxford University professor considered one of the 20th century's strongest exponents of liberalism. Ruffo's current project is titled "The rise of liberal thought in the U.S.A."
He has exhibited at M.A.D. (the Museum of Arts and Design) in New York; TEA (Tenerife Espacio de las Artes); Kunstverein Langenhagen, Germany; MAXXI (the National Museum of XXI Century Arts), Rome; MACRO (Museo d'Arte Contemporanea, Roma); MAR (Museo d'Arte della città di Ravenna); and the Centro Arti Visive Pescheria, Pesaro, Italy.
In 2005 he travelled to Beslan, Russia, to work with children who survived the massacre at their local school by Chechen rebels. Ruffo has also worked on other public projects, including a sculptural proposal for Ground Zero, a special project in the psychiatric hospital in Colmar, France, and various art workshops with disadvantaged children.