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April 19June 06, 2021

Post-War Italian Art Tales

Press release

Post-War Italian Art Tales is an exhibition which sheds light on the revolutionary artistic experiences of Italian art of the Post-War period up until the present day.
Conceived as a storytelling, this exhibition presents the various methods, styles and solutions of each artist, revealing them through critical quotes.
The narrative of each artist describes a key aspect of his or her work which allows the viewer to embark on a personal journey through the eyes of art historians, critics and curators.

Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Jannis Kounellis

Untitled (JJ), 1961

Signed and dated (on the reverse): "Kounellis 61"
Paint on paper
71 x 100 cm
28 x 39 3/8 in

Jannis Kounellis

Untitled , 2015

Iron and burlap
100 x 70 x 14.8 cm
39 3/8 x 27 1/2 x 5 7/8 in

In 1957, a year before Kounellis drew up his first urban icons which were followed in 1959 by his letter works, Pier Paolo Pasolini published his Ashes of Gramsci, an anthology of poems that reflected upon the dramatic question of a generation ’stretching out’ to take on the role of the intellectual as the entity suspended between the tension of social problems and its aspiration to fulfil its own identity. […] The large works with the letters and the urban signs in black enamel became the rotuli romani to be read in public and for diffusion in the community.

Germano Celant, 1983

Michelangelo Pistoletto

Television, 1983

Signed, titled, dated and inscribed (on the reverse): "277 / >Television 1/2< / TELEVISION / serigrafia su acciaio / lucidato a specchio / cm 100 x 120 / Michelangelo Pistoletto / 1962-83"
Edition of 2 (#1/2)
Silkscreen on stainless steel
100 x 120 cm
39 3/8 x 47 1/4 in

In Pistoletto’s mirroring works there is a consuming of reality. This expands in its reflection by way of the action and the movement, although without the works neither acting nor moving. In these we perceive our passing in the form of doubling or splitting ourselves, also remaining immobile. […] In Pistoletto’s work reality is reproduced in its fundamental dimensions, those of time and space.

 

Tommaso Trini, 1966

Nunzio

Untitled, 1993

Combustion on wood and pigment
56.5 x 47.5 x 8 cm
22 1/4 x 18 3/4 x 3 1/8 in

Nunzio’s choice of materials – of a wood still so close to its nature as tree, of black, smoke and lead – was certainly not motivated by the ingenuous pantheistic persuasion of ‘poor’ sculpture nor by its tautological ‘staying put’ in order to testify to existing. It is imagination that gives life and character to Nunzio’s sculptures: imagination called into play from the depths of a primitive distance with an insistent and deaf force that seems to come from the very heart of the matter he employed and from the archaic forms he gave them with such essential simplicity.

 

Giuliano Briganti, 1986
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Fausto Melotti

Disegno nello spazio, 1981

Signed (on the base): “Melotti”
Brass
76 x 59 x 14 cm
29 7/8 x 23 1/4 x 5 1/2 in

All of Melotti’s sculptures is an inimitable event carried out in the central clearing of a labyrinth. […] Melotti used the word silence to indicate the zone of isolation that surrounds certain sculptures of the past. […] In a world which every day shouts in order to make itself heard […] Melotti uprooted sculpture from the ground and raised it into silence and empty space.

 

Gabriella Drudi, 1975

Agostino Bonalumi

Rosso , 1988

Signed (on the reverse)
Acrylic on canvas
50 x 50 cm
19 3/4 x 19 3/4 in

Agostino Bonalumi

Bronze, 1969-2007

Signed and numbered (underneath): "Bonalumi 2/7"
Edition of 7 plus 2 artist's proofs (#2/7)
Bronze
60 x 58 x 58 cm
23 5/8 x 22 7/8 x 22 7/8 in

From among the many aspects of today’s artistic scene we see the multiplication of the examples of a tendency towards creating forms of ‘object-painting’: in other words, of a painting that notwithstanding the fact that it maintains the characteristics of autonomy, of creative uniqueness of the handicraft let us say, embodies or already intentionally has as its aim the task of first of all representing ‘itself’ and not something extrinsic. […] Bonalumi constitutes a case that really sets itself apart and which, in a certain sense, is exemplary.

Gillo Dorfles, 1965
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Alberto Burri

Nero Cretto , 1978

Acrovinyl on Celotex
51.5 x 71.5 cm
20 1/4 x 28 1/8 in

Lucio Fontana

Concetto spaziale. Attese, 1964 - 1965

Signed, titled and inscribed (on the reverse): "l. Fontana / “Concetto Spaziale” / ATTESE / mi ànno strappato / 48 denti"
Waterpaint on canvas
38 x 47 cm
15 x 18 1/2 in

Like two pillars Burri and Fontana support the architrave of an Italian and European historical and artistic continuity which time is already undertaking to ratify. […] However, and in going well beyond the differences which distinguished the paths of these two artists, there have been exhibitions and numerous critical considerations which have instead united them. […] In 1952, for example, the year in which both artists signed the Manifesto of the Spatial Movement for television at the Venice Biennial, an extremely unimportant and hardly noticed event which nevertheless appears to have been symptomatic. During the exhibition Fontana purchased a drawing by Alberto Burri. For different reasons this drawing had a very particular value for the two artists: it was entitled Lo strappo: studio (The Rent: a study).

Bruno Corà, 2010
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Enrico Castellani

Superficie bianca, 2008

Signed, titled and dated (on the reverse): "Castellani - Superficie bianca - 2008 - "
Acrylic on canvas
100 x 100 cm
39 3/8 x 39 3/8 in

Castellani adopted the so-called shaped canvas procedure: rather than being discarded the canvas was modelled in such a way as to take on protrusions, projections that if one wanted were physically ‘verifiable’ with the palm of one’s hand. Castellani entrusted his work to an underlying frame structure made up of nails which on his monochrome canvases impressed protrusions according to clear-cut modules.

 

Renato Barilli, 2007

Piero Manzoni

Achrome, 1958-1959

Creased canvas and kaolin
18 x 24.5 cm
7 1/8 x 9 5/8 in

Manzoni who inscribed nightmares of the unconscious on chaotic surfaces with varnish colours or distinct enamels at this point tried paled surfaces of an absolute white, entrusted to sensitivity in treating the matter and fractured by plastic reliefs and their shadows.

 

Luciano Anceschi, 1958
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Carla Accardi

Labirinto rosso , 1955

Signed (lower right): “ACCARDI”
Enamel and casein on canvas
60 x 100 x 2 cm
23 5/8 x 39 3/8 x 3/4 in

Piero Dorazio

Scaletta, 1973

Signed, dated and titled (on the reverse): "Piero Dorazio / 1973 / Scaletta"
Oil on canvas
100 x 50 x 4 cm
39 3/8 x 19 3/4 x 1 5/8 in

As much as Carla Accardi’s work records the artistic events that surround it like a seismograph, likewise the work by Piero Dorazio – in spite of transformations and evolutions – reaffirms inviolable presuppositions: the bidimensional surface as the measure of painting, the quality of the pictorial impasto, the intensity of the colour, the brushstroke and the composition.

Adachiara Zevi, 2006
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London
Post-War Italian Art Tales, exhibition view 2021, Mazzoleni London

Getulio Alviani

Cerchi virtuali, 1967

Signed and dated (on the reverse): "getulio alviani / cerchi virtuali / acciaio cm 100 x 50 x 10 / 1967"
Steel
100 x 50 x 10 cm
39 3/8 x 19 3/4 x 4 in

Getulio Alviani, who with his luminous vibratory surfaces on aluminium laminate sheets by way of mechanical engravings using a circular cutter, established a multiple creation of images that are always different although in relation to a unique and determinate module. One of the main components which have an effect in these aesthetic solutions is light in all of its energetic potentialities.

 

Umbro Apollonio, 1966

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Press release

Press Release