I TEATRINI

I TEATRINI

Rarely seen in significant number, this display will mark the first exclusive presentation of the iconic Italian artist’s “Little Theatres” outside of Italy. Paper studies will join a variety of finished examples to demonstrate their range and diversity. Created between 1964 and 1966, in the wake of his renowned Fine di Dio (“End of God”) series, the Teatrini condense vast cosmic reality into an objectified spectacle of space. These miniature environments capture space by encasing perforated canvases within lacquered wooden frames, themselves shaped into organic forms reminiscent of trees, clouds, and landscape. Fontana considered this series the culmination of his “Spatial Concepts,” artworks designed to affect the viewer’s perception of space within the work and beyond. He defined this late development of his theoretical approach as “Realistic Spatialism.” The Teatrini also bear witness to the world around the artist, with playful allusions to the first spacewalk in 1965 embedded in punctures walking across canvas like footsteps in the sky. Responding to contemporary tendencies in Pop Art, the luxurious finish of the frames hijacks the high-shine consumerist aesthetic of the 1960s by using surface appeal to draw the viewer beyond material beauty towards an appreciation of the great unknown.

I TEATRINI

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