With lockdown restrictions in London easing, art galleries across the city have reopened their doors to the public, presenting a rich variety of new exhibitions for the spring.
Running until 6 June, 2021 at Mazzoleni London, Post-War Italian Art Tales features works by iconic Italian artists, Carla Accardi, Getulio Alviani, Agostino Bonalumi, Alberto Burri, Enrico Castellani, Piero Dorazio, Lucio Fontana, Jannis Kounellis, Piero Manzoni, Fausto Melotti, Nunzio and Michelangelo Pistoletto. The result is a meditative cross-generational display of works by the leading protagonists of twentieth century Italian art.
Spanning from the trailblazing artistic practices of the post-war period up until the present day, Art Tales highlights the extensive role played by Italian art within the international art scene of the past century. Seamlessly arranged in a powerfully minimalist fashion, the artworks are accompanied by written text which guides the visitor as they walk through each room.
These quotations include those of esteemed figures such as Luciano Anceschi and Germano Celant, who have lived and experienced the same generation of the artists featured in the exhibition; presenting the viewer with a well-informed and cultivated means of visual interpretation.
The end result is a gentle offering of various possible understandings; subtle hints that lead towards a more developed comprehension of the works. The descriptions situate each artist’s style within its own social and historical background providing context. Mazzoleni tells an elegantly accomplished tale of post-war Italian art; the detail, accuracy and care that lies behind the curation of this show is indisputable.
The front room emits a striking energy, opening with Kounellis’ iconic black letters on a white background, complemented by Pistoletto’s ‘mirroring surfaces’, which transport the viewer into a new experience of the space-time dimension of the work. The shining computers appeal almost prophetic in reflecting our now digital selves.
In the second room, Lucio Fontana’s renowned tagli bianchi (white slashes), paired with Alberto Burri’s cretto nero (black crack), immediately catch the eye; presenting a fantastic monochrome tribute to two of the most celebrated artists of the twentieth century.
The exhibition continues in the same manner, as great Italian artists are recognised by their signature styles from one room to the next. In format, medium and colour, the diversity of the artworks is astounding, with every piece channelling its own energy and unique source of inspiration. Although the exhibition itself presents a notably dispersed collection of paintings and sculptures, it by no means restricts the sweeping insight into the variety of artistic exploration occurring in Italy over the last 100 years.
Uniting text and image, the exhibition transforms itself into a deeply-engaging and immersive story. The narrative allows the viewer to embark on a journey through the eyes of acclaimed art historians, curators and critics, whose words encompass the creative research and aesthetic experimentation carried out by the artists.
For more information about the show and the collection of works click here.