Mazzoleni London is pleased to present Pittura Analitica: 1970s, the most comprehensive UK exhibition devoted to the Pittura Analitica group of artists who together represented one of the most significant and influential artistic movements of the Italian Post-War period.
Closely aligned to other European movements such as the Supports/Surfaces group in France and ‘Radical Painting’ in Germany, as well as to the American Minimalists, the Pittura Analitica artists emerged in Italy in the 1970s, striving to redefine painting for the modern era and reclaim the form as a contemporary communicator.
The exhibition displays a selection of works, none of which have been exhibited in the UK, from each of the 14 proponents of the movement: Carlo Battaglia (1933–2005),
Enzo Cacciola (b. 1945), Vincenzo
Marco Gastini (b. 1938), Giorgio
Elio Marchegiani (b. 1929), Paolo
Claudio Olivieri (b.1934), Pino Pinelli (b.1938), Claudio Verna (b.1937) and Gianfranco Zappettini (b. 1939) are together generally considered to constitute the Pittura Analitica group.
Cecchini (b. 1934), Paolo Cotani (1940–2011), Griffa (b.1936), Riccardo Guarneri (b.1933), Masi (b. 1933), Carmengloria Morales (b.1942),
These artists focused on the materiality of painting, championing everything from elastic bands to watercolours, paint rollers to weaving, cement to canvas. By extending the possibilities of the medium, the Pittura Analitica group aimed to reach an alternative understanding of space and create a new language, which would allow them to investigate what it means to paint.
The works on display span the whole decade and the exhibition also includes a selection of archival material, unseen in the UK, encompassing invitations and catalogues from the most important 1970s exhibitions of the movement. These exhibitions include Bilder ohne Bilder at the Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn (1977) and Abstraction Analytique: Fracture du Monochrome Aujourd'hui en Europe (1978) at the Arc Paris, Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.
The term ‘Pittura Analitica’, which literally translates as ‘Analytical Painting’, appeared for the first time in December 1974 when the exhibition Geplante Malerei (‘Planned Painting’), mounted by the German art critic Klaus Honnef at the Westfälischer Kunstverein, Münster transferred to Galleria il Milione, Milan. It was Honnef, together with French art critic Catherine Millet, who opened Analytische Malerei (‘Analytical Painting’) at Galleria La Bertesca, Düsseldorf in June 1975. Analytische Malerei brought together the European analytical painting movements situating the Pittura Analitica artists in their international context, with works by Enzo Cacciola, Paolo Cotani, Giorgio Griffa, Carmengloria Morales, Claudio Verna and Gianfranco Zappettini amongst others. They were exhibited alongside French artists such as Noël Dolla, Vivien Isnard and Claude Viallat, German artists such as Winfred Gaul, Raimund Girke and Jerry Zeniuk and the Dutch artist Rudi van de Wint.
A number of the Pittura Analitica artists also exhibited at Documenta 6 (Kassel, 1977), most notably Enzo Cacciola, Carmengloria Morales, Claudio Olivieri and Gianfranco Zappettini.
The exhibition is curated by international curator, Alberto Fiz, who has said that, ‘We could call Pittura Analitica a third way in Post-War Italian art. It was a silent revolution realised in the name of painting, which was no longer conceived as a goal but as the repossession of a language...Pittura Analitica allowed painting to overcome a crisis that appeared irreversible.’
The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated monograph on Pittura Analitica, published by Silvana Editoriale and also coincides with a solo exhibition of Gianfranco Zappettini at Mazzoleni Turin, 5 May – 10 July 2016.