Lucio Fontana & Ico Parisi

Galleria d'Arte Maggiore G.A.M.
via Manzoni 25, 20121, Milan

extended till November 16, 2017
only by appointment

With the opening exhibition of the new space of Galleria d'Arte Maggiore G.A.M. in Milan, the director Alessia Calarota continues the tradition of dialogues that has always distinguished the activity of the historical gallery. Art and Architecture will be the main theme of this exhibition focused on Lucio Fontana, great Master of the XX Century Art, who will be exhibited together with the famous architect Ico Parisi. The exhibition will infact show a corpus of rare works, realized by Lucio Fontana for the "Monumento dei Caduti alla Resistenza" in 1962, interesting testament of the monument conceived by both artists in Cuneo but never realized.

In a dialogue between art and architecture looking to a relationship with the Italian institutions and museums, Galleria d'Arte Maggiore G.A.M. presents in its new location in Milan the Monumento dei Caduti alla Resistenza of 1961-1962. It is a museum group of works, precious testament of the never realized monument in Cuneo that won a public contest and involved one painter, one architect and one sculptor. In fact in these four works on paper, realized by Lucio Fontana, it is evident that the project included the architectural scenary by Ico Parisi, a sculpture by Francesco Somaini, and the cut and the holes by Fontana himself in the opposite concrete. The artwork matches well with the interest shown by Fontana for the achitectural space as testified by his Ambienti spaziali - rooms and corridors projected and conceived by the artist since the end of the 1940s – and with the interest of Ico Parisi in creating an architectural work that would integrate art. His idea was so developed over the 1960s involving the main artists of that period - such as Lucio Fontana and Fausto Melotti - and reaching its peak in Operazione Arcevia (1973-76). Here Parisi draws a rural village, with an artisan and agricultural vocation, immersed in the hills of the Marche, for a 'existential community'. The project is characterized by the abundance of artistic presences, as those by Michelangelo Antonioni, Alberto Burri, Tonino Guerra, César and Rod Duddly.

As Flaminio Gualdoni writes in the catalogue promoted by Franco and Roberta Calarota and edited by Skirà in 1999: "The encounter between Fontana and Parisi is inevitable. At the Triennale in 1951 the artist realizes the fundamental ceiling in neon, in a period in which, thanks to the relationship with Luciano Baldessari, his contamination with the architectural experience – which started in the 1930s – reaches unprecedented levels of intensity. Parisi is present at the same Triennale mainly with furniture, among which there is a desk whose sides are decorated with reliefs by Vittorio Tavernari, the same author whose big sculputre is laying under Fontana's ceiling in neon. The encounter happens in that unique atmosphere. And it will lead not only to the work for Parisi's home but also to another fundamental moment of the postwar debate: the contest for the "Monumento ai Caduti della Resistenza" in Cuneo. The project proposes a structure digged in the ground and inhabited by a groove traced in concrete by Fontana and placed under an intense plastic form by Somaini. This is the year 1962: the project, widely considered to be the best, is finally abandoned, "italico more". Many works by Fontana are accumulated in Parisi's house. In addition to the tile hanged on the terrace's balustrade, now lost, there are two extraordinary oil paintings, one is black and hanged in the bedroom in the place where once there were popular artworks, the other one is pink, setted over the table-shelf in the living room. Then there are two ceramics on the shelf in the living room, dated 1957 and 1958, and, furthermore, drawings".

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