Lucio Fontana - The Great Wonderful: 100 Years of Italian Art New York Wednesday, May 13, 2015 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Marlborough Galleria d'Arte, Rome
    Private Collection, Rome
    Fondazione Marconi Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Milan
    Private Collection, Milan

  • Exhibited

    Saint-Paul de Vence, Galerie Pascal Retelet, Lucio Fontana Oeuvres, Ugo Mulas Photographies, May 13 - June 30, 2000

  • Literature

    E. Crispolti, Lucio Fontana, Catalogue Raisonné, vol. II, Brussels, 1974, p. 176-77, no. 66TE22 (illustrated)
    E. Crispolti, Lucio Fontana Catalogo Generale, vol. II, Milan, 1986, p. 622, no. 66-TE-22 (illustrated)
    Lucio Fontana Oeuvres, Ugo Mulas Photographies, exh. cat., Galerie Pascal Retelet, Saint-Paul de Vence, 2000, pp. 116-17
    G. Aspesi et al, Autobiografia di una galleria Lo Studio Marconi 1965/1992, Milan: Skira, 2004, p. 224 (illustrated)
    E. Crispolti, Lucio Fontana: Catalogo Ragionato di Sculture, Dipinti e Ambientazioni, Tomo II, Milan: Skira, 2006, p. 810, no. 66-TE-22 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    From 1964 to 1966 Lucio Fontana expanded his research and experimentation with the group of works known as his teatrini or small theaters. His idea of spatial abstraction that was developed with the slashes and the holes assumed a figurative if even slightly cartoonish dimension with the teatrini. The layers of the teatrini became a kind of backdrop, stage design or landscape where some, any, action could transpire. Fontana further explored and expounded on the conceptual and figural inventions and problems with which what other artists like Scheggi (lots 11, 16), Dadamaino (lot 47) and Ceroli (lot 28) grappled. Fontana’s teatrini express very well how visual art, theatre and design had created a prolific dialogue in Italy throughout the mid-1960s. The black and deep blue color and loose bubbling forms of the foreground in this Concetto spaziale, Teatrino from 1966 reflect Fontana’s curiosity and attention towards the development of Pop Art in England and the United States at this time. He does this all while maintaining tight control of his elegance, the signature style which elevated him to the status of “dandy” of Italian and European postwar art.


Concetto spaziale, Teatrino

waterpaint on canvas, lacquered wood
56 1/4 x 65 3/8 in. (143 x 166 cm)
Signed and titled "l. Fontana 'concetto spaziale'" on the reverse.

$850,000 - 950,000 

Contact Specialist
Brittany Lopez Slater
Head of International Exhibitions
New York
+1 212 940 1299

Carolina Lanfranchi
+39 338 924 1720

The Great Wonderful: 100 Years of Italian Art

New York 13 May 2015 4pm