About Luna Berlusconi's works
Luna Berlusconi's work is illustrative of the fields of Street art, Pop, Figuration and Conceptual. Street art often implies questions of identity, social structures or political activism, and although questioned in the past, it has become an fundamental facet of contemporary art. The origins of street art can be found in graffiti art of the 1970s-1980s, and today it endures in various urban contexts as well as galleries and other cultural spaces. Street art epitomizes a complex and astonishing form of artistic expression, and as such its meaning may go beyond a simple art movement. Critically acclaimed street artist include Banksy, JR and Shepard Fairey.
In Britain, Pop Art started to develop with the Independent Group (IG), in the 1950s. The Independent Group became responsible for a significant amount of the concepts that would cultivate British Pop Art, embracing their interest in mass popular culture which they profoundly explored. In the United States, Pop Art can be perceived as a clear reaction to Abstract Expressionism, and a return to figurative art, drawing from popular imagery and the sphere of mass consumerism, exploding in the post-war context of the 1950s. Through their work, Pop Artists depicted a number of aspects of the “low” popular culture, which had a powerful impact on day-to-day, thus rejecting the supremacy of “high” art and creating a new, democratic form of art which would endure as a truly revolutionary movement.
Often seen as the contrary of abstraction, figurative art also exists beyond just a simple depiction of reality. Although it essentially means the ability to represent a real-world subject, the style, approaches and mediums that can be chosen by the artist are boundless, which gives figurative art the possibility to be truly innovative and radical. Some glorious instances of figurative art include Henri Matisse’s sculpture The Serf, or Pablo Picasso’s painting Les Demoiselles D’Avignon.
Defined as a movement in the late 1960s, simultaneously in Europe and America, Conceptual art was highly influenced by the purity of Minimalism, although it took a step further in defying all pre-existing conceptions one would have about art. Defining Conceptual art can be intricate, as the boundaries are not clearly set, and constantly evolving. The artworks can take the form of almost anything, but the essential idea remains the same - the strategies and concepts behind the art are more important than the finished artwork itself. The conceptual artists use a variety of materials and forms to freely explore the myriad of possibilities through which they want to convey their message. Some of the most prominent figures of Conceptualism include artists such as Sol LeWitt, Lawrence Weiner and Yoko Ono. French artist Marcel Duchamp is thought to be the forefather of Conceptualism, with his artwork Fontaine, where he famously tried to blur the boundaries between art and reality.
Luna Berlusconi's exhibition
Historical Context of Italy
Italy has been tremendously sumptuous in cultural influence since the time of the Romans, this classical period has exerted a fascinating influence on the cultural development and distinctiveness of the country. Italy represents the country of the Renaissance, called 'Rinascita' in Italian, signifying 'rebirth'. The Renaissance has been considered, from the early 1400s, as the first extensive blossoming of cultural erudition in art, architecture, music, poetry, philosophy and politics since the Middle Ages. Throughout the modern and contemporary period, Italy was tormented by the fascism of Mussolini but has nonetheless endured as an important focal point for artistic expression, spawning movements such as Futurism, Arte Povera and the Minimalism related to the Zero Movement, as well as the expressive painting of the Transavanguardia. Important Italian artists of the twentieth and twenty first centuries include Giorgio Di Chirico, Giacomo Balla, Giorgio Morandi, Alberto Giacometti, Lucio Fontana, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Francesco Clemente and Mimmo Paladino.