For its in-person presentation at FIAC 2021, Cardi Gallery will present Painting: 1958-2020 with a selection of historical works by Agostino Bonalumi, Dadamaino, Piero Manzoni, Mimmo Rotella, and Claudio Verna, displayed in dialogue with recent pieces by Davide Balliano, Domenico Bianchi, Paolo Canevari and Bosco Sodi.
For its participation in FIAC Online Viewing Rooms, Cardi Gallery will present a selection of works included in the booth display Painting: 1958-2020. In the OVR the focus is on five pieces that establish a dialogue between the practices of key post-war Italian artists (Piero Manzoni, Dadamaino, Claudio Verna) and contemporary New-York based artists (Bosco Sodi, Davide Balliano).
In an era dominated by Abstract Expressionism and Art Informel, through his Achrome series—Achrome, 1958-59 being an early example—Piero Manzoni (Italy, 1933-1963) banished any narrative content through the total elimination of any pictorial colour or chromatic tone. He aimed at the absolute being of an image, removing the agency of the artist. His kaolin-soaked canvases folded under their weight and crystallised in shapes dictated by gravity and the drying process.
Chance played a crucial role also in the work of fellow 'Azimuth' group only female member, Dadamaino (Italy, 1930-2004). As Volume a Moduli Sfasati, 1960 testifies, she sought transparency in layers of shower curtain material, which she punched by hand, creating a pattern of holes. The warmth of her hand was the one determining factor behind placing the plastic holes onto the stretchers, with the two layers slightly displaced, resulting in a dynamic composition, where the gaze of the viewer struggles to focus.
Member of the 'Pittura Analitica' group Claudio Verna (Italy, 1937) aimed to free painting from the referential links to reality typical of figuration, the language of expression that characterised abstraction, and the underlying meaning embedded in conceptual art. Bianco Obliquo II, 1976 is characterised by a strong focus on the medium's constructive elements, including space, form, paint, and the colour white employed to materialise a new dimension. By interrupting the picture plane with lines and fields of different colours blurring in the background, Verna sought to make the viewer's eyes move from one side of the painted surface to the other.
Untitled, 2019 is a beautiful example of vividly red paintings by Bosco Sodi (Mexico, 1970). His works are shaped not by tools but by the accidental. With its natural drying and weathering processes, the passing of time intervenes to alter monochrome bodies of sawdust mixed with glue, pigments, and ground minerals, revealing beautifully organic structures that subvert the artistic form and are reminiscent of earthly dried landscapes.
In his paintings, Davide Balliano (Italy, 1983) often explores the nature of white. He regards it as a soft colour with an astounding richness of possible hues capable of opening the doors to complex spatial explorations that exceed the confines of the painting, activating the surrounding space of the work through the presentation of a spatial equilibrium between absence and presence. At once rejecting figuration and abstraction, his spirals—as exemplified in UNTITLED_0175, 2020 defy unilateral conceptual interpretations, pointing the viewer's gaze towards something that may not be immediately visible.