Mazzoleni 1986–2016: 30 years of art 30 Italian artists
27 February – 5 May 2017
Private view: Monday 6 March 2017, 6 – 8 pm
￼Mazzoleni is pleased to present Mazzoleni 1986-2016: 30 years of art 30 Italian artists. Transferring from the gallery’s Turin space, the exhibition features 30 different works from the Mazzoleni collection by 30 major Italian artists. The exhibition traces a path through the history of 20th century Italian art, from the early 20th century through Post-War movements and the research of the following decades, and reflects the activity of the gallery in promoting these artists on the international scene.
Almost all the works on display are from the Mazzoleni collection, which was started in the 1960s by Giovanni and Anna Pia Mazzoleni. The establishment of the gallery in 1986 was a natural evolution of their commitment to Modern and Contemporary Italian art, first as private collectors and then as gallerists.
Works by some of the most important Italian artists from the historic avant-garde movements, including Giacomo Balla (1871-1958), Gino Severini (1883-1966) and Giorgio de Chirico (1888-1978) are joined by works from the most significant artists of the Post-War period: various generations of artists that the legacy of Modern Italian art helped to create. They include, for example, Lucio Fontana (1899-1968), Alberto Burri (1915-1995), Enrico Baj (1924-2003), Piero Manzoni (1933-1963), Michelangelo Pistoletto (b.1933), Giulio Paolini (b.1940) and Salvo (1947-2015). The exhibition takes as its starting point the arrival of Futurism, a key Italian contribution to the development of early 20th century art: for example, the Futurist research into space, time and contemporary new materials was to be fundamental, thanks to the “Spatialist” mediation of Lucio Fontana, for artists such as Roberto Crippa (1921-1972), Gianni Colombo (1937-1993), Getulio Alviani (b. 1939) and Gianni Piacentino (b. 1945).
Lucio Fontana reinvented art and opened the canvas to new dimensions, as exemplified by the selected cut canvas, Concetto spaziale. Attese (1964), included in the exhibition, and inspired the generation of artists born in Italy in the 1930s, including among others Enrico Castellani (b. 1930), Piero Manzoni and Agostino Bonalumi (1935-2013), all of whom endeavored to reinterpret the possibilities of the surface even further and in turn reformulated the concepts of time, space and volume.
At the same time, Alberto Burri shifted the focus of art practice towards new radical experiments by using plastic, burlap and combusted materials as primary media. The use of non-painterly materials was to become a common practice among artists of successive generations. The Mazzoleni collection features numerous masterpieces by Burri, including Rosso (1955), a work published in the renowned periodical Harper’s Bazaar in the September of that year, and Bianco CN 4 from 1966, which featured on the cover of the major monograph on the artist written by Maurizio Calvesi (1971).
￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼In parallel with Burri’s research, Italy saw the explosion of a rich tradition of abstract, informal and gestural painting with artists such as Giuseppe Capogrossi (1900-1972), Afro (1912-1976), Giulio Turcato (1912-1995), Emilio Vedova (1919-2006) and Piero Dorazio (1927-2005) who during their lifetimes were to be the protagonists of exhibitions in major international settings.
A fully illustrated book accompanies the exhibition with statements from exhibiting artists and historical documents from the gallery’s archives and the artists’ foundations. The text provides fundamental insights into the choices that moulded the approach of a family devoted to art and includes an extended interview between curator Gaspare Luigi Marcone and members of the Mazzoleni family. The book is published in Italian and English by Carlo Cambi Editore.
Giacomo Balla (1871-1958); Felice Casorati (1883-1963); Gino Severini (1883-1966); Giorgio de Chirico (1888-1978); Alberto Savinio (1891-1952); Massimo Campigli (1895-1971); Lucio Fontana (1899-1968); Giuseppe Capogrossi (1900-1972); Fausto Melotti (1901-1986); Afro (1912-1976); Giulio Turcato (1912-1995); Alberto Burri (1915-1995); Emilio Vedova (1919-2006); Roberto Crippa (1921- 1972); Enrico Baj (1924-2003); Arnaldo Pomodoro (1926); Piero Dorazio (1927-2005); Giuseppe Uncini (1929-2008); Enrico Castellani (1930); Piero Manzoni (1933-1963); Michelangelo Pistoletto (1933); Mario Schifano (1934-1998); Agostino Bonalumi (1935-2013); Gianni Colombo (1937-1993); Getulio Alviani (1939); Gianfranco Zappettini (1939); Giulio Paolini (1940); Gianni Piacentino (1945); Salvo (1947-2015); Nunzio (1954).
Notes to Editors
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Mazzoleni was founded in Turin in 1986 and opened a Mayfair-based London gallery in October 2014. Over the past three decades Mazzoleni has organised solo and group exhibitions of more than 150 prominent Italian and international artists from across the 20th century.
The gallery evolved from the private collection of Giovanni and Anna Pia Mazzoleni who have been collecting since the 1960s. The collection brought together significant works from important international art movements including Surrealism, Futurism and Abstract Art. Italian Post-War art quickly became the primary focus of the collection and became the core of Mazzoleni’s curatorial programme when Giovanni’s sons Davide and Luigi joined the gallery in the 1990s.
Today the Turin gallery takes up three floors of Palazzo Panizza, overlooking the historic Piazza Solferino and occupying part of the original 19th century foyer of the Alfieri theatre. The London gallery is situated on Albemarle Street, in the heart of Mayfair’s historic art district. The 3,000 square foot space – designed by Architect David Trad, which hosts exhibitions across two levels, presents a programme focused on museum-calibre Post-War Italian art and art from the Seventies, working in close collaboration with artists’ estates and foundations.
Recent critically acclaimed exhibitions have included the major solo Alberto Burri exhibition in 2015, ‘Piero Manzoni. Achromes: Linea Infinita’, curated by Gaspare Luigi Marcone in collaboration with the Piero Manzoni Foundation, and ‘Fontana/Melotti. Angelic Spaces and Infinite Geometries’, curated by Daniela Ferrari of the MART Museum Trento/Rovereto in 2016. All exhibitions are accompanied by fully illustrated monographs, often featuring newly commissioned research contributing to current critical and art historical discourse.
In addition, in recent years Mazzoleni has been increasingly present at international art fairs, participating across London, Basel, Hong Kong, New York and Miami, amongst others.
27 Albemarle Street, London W1S 4HZ
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