Lucio Fontana. Walking the Space: Spatial Environments, 1948 - 1968 is the US debut of the first comprehensive presentation of Lucio Fontana's (1899-1968) groundbreaking 'Ambienti spaziali' (Spatial Environments). Fontana, a visionary whose revolutionary practice continues to influence contemporary movements worldwide, conceived of his first environmental work in 1948, predating the conceptual achievements of Robert Irwin, James Turrell, and Donald Judd by more than a decade.
Arranged chronologically and beginning with Fontana's first spatial work, the exhibition will feature 9 self-contained installations spanning from 1948 to 1968, revealing the artist's revolutionary approach to artmaking in order to 'open up space, create a new dimension, tie in the cosmos, as it endlessly expands beyond the confining plane of the picture.' The most radical, but least well-known area of his oeuvre, the 'Spatial Environments' find Fontana moving beyond the conventions of painting by removing the canvas and using new technology, including neon, to 'paint' space with light, putting the viewer at the centre of the composition.
Through collaboration with the Fondazione Lucio Fontana, Milan, this landmark exhibition will highlight Fontana's critical contribution to the evolution of conceptual art and the confluence of art with science and technology as a means to explore aspects of human perceptual experience.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a new book published by Hauser & Wirth Publishers, as well as an archival presentation of related ephemera and drawings to provide an educational context for the art on view.
The first of a trilogy of exhibitions with the Fontana Foundation, the presentation in Los Angeles will be followed by an exhibition in New York in spring 2021 that will explore Lucio Fontana's ceramics and sculptures. Subsequently, a major survey of the artist's career will be staged at Hauser & Wirth Hong Kong in fall 2021. All three presentations will be curated by leading Fontana scholar Luca Massimo Barbero, Director of the Institute of Art History, Giorgio Cini Foundation, Venice, and Editor of the Fontana works on paper catalogue raisonné and of the Fontana ceramics catalogue raisonné (currently in progress).
Press release courtesy Hauser & Wirth.
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