Tano Festa, Rome 1938 - 1998 Rome

  • Tano Festa

    Rome 1938 - 1998 Rome

Tano Festa is a leading figure of Italian Pop art. Born in Rome in 1938, Festa matriculated at the Istituto d’arte di Roma but soon turned to painting, influenced by the expressive gestures of Arte Informale, holding his debut solo exhibition at the esteemed Galleria La Salita in 1961. He soon became a prominent member of the Piazza del Popolo School, a group of young artists who enthusiastically embraced the ideas and aesthetics of American Pop art, reconceptualizing the visual expressions of the 1960s economic boom they found all around them, from the imagery of film and advertising to mass-produced everyday objects. Though Festa’s earliest paintings were monochromatic canvases, he soon began incorporating objets trouvés into his works in a Dada-esque manner, transforming the detritus of everyday urban life, such as shutters, doors, windows, wardrobes, and mirrors, into framing structures for painted landscapes. In 1963, Festa began translating great masterpieces of the art historical canon into screen-painted Pop icons. Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel was a favourite theme, and in 1964, to honour the fourth centenary of the death of Michelangelo, Festa presented a series devoted to the Creation of Adam at the Venice Biennale. Festa continued to reinterpret artists of the past, from Van Eyck to Velázquez, Ensor to Bacon, for the rest of his career.