Immaterial: Fontana CeramicsLondon
Senzo titolo (Untitled), 1957
Signed and dated l. fontana 57 on the top Registered at the Fondazione Lucio Fontana, Milan, No. 356/60
33 x 19.5 x 19.5 cm / 13 x 7.7 x 7.7 in
Galleria 2C, Rome;Acquired by the previous owner during 1980s (until 2017)
"I am a sculptor, not a ceramist. I have never thrown a plate on the wheel, nor painted a vase" Although Lucio Fontana is most famously known for his slashed canvases, his artistic production is in fact extremely varied. In the 1930s, Fontana began his artistic investigation with ceramics in a Futurist fashion. This became a medium the artist would continue to work with throughout his career, until his death. Whilst the works produced in the interwar period are characterised by an almost polished figurative style (a clear inheritance of Fontana’s father, a sculptor in his own right); the artist later adopted a more visceral, almost expressionistic approach: the figures are still recognisable, but they are simplified in their movements and emotional features. In 1951, following his first Concetti Spaziali, Fontana experimented with Buchi on terracotta for the first time. After the first perforated canvas of 1948, Fontana applied his highly distinctive formal solution to everyday objects, spanning from evening dresses to domestic items[fig.1]. In the case of the present work, one might speak of decoration. Nevertheless, this sculpture which is reminiscent of a vase exemplifies the artist’s negation of a distinction between high and low art, typical of the avant-garde. Fontana’s ceramics ‘become alive in the hinc et nunc of both creation and daily use.’ In other words, for the artist the aesthetic experience has to coincide with life itself. Thus, the artwork becomes part of daily routine in order to be a constant source of pleasure for its viewers. This particular piece was realised in Albisola, in Mazzotti’s ceramic laboratory. Tullio Mazzotti had been the sponsor of, and manufacturer for, many Italian Futurists, and Fontana collaborated with him for his ceramic pieces since the 1930s. The artwork described above is subject to changes in availability and price without prior notice. Where applicable ARR will be added.