Curated by Luca Massimo Barbero in collaboration with Fondazione Lucio Fontana of Milan, Lucio Fontana. Walking the Space: Ambienti Spaziali, 1948–1968 is an exhibition of historical importance that sheds light on the crucial contribution of Fontana to the evolution of conceptual art and the convergence of art, science and technology as ways of investigating human perception and experience.
Lucio Fontana, a visionary artist whose revolutionary practice continues to influence artists from all over the world, created his first Ambiente in 1948, acting as a forerunner of many of the spatial, conceptual and immersive experiments of figures like Piero Manzoni, Yayoi Kusama and James Turrell.
In a chronological layout that starts with Fontana’s very first spatial work, the exhibition features nine Ambienti, made between 1948 and 1968.
Thanks to extensive research conducted in the archival materials of Fondazione Lucio Fontana, the exhibition in Los Angeles presents accurate reconstructions of the original Ambienti Spaziali that were dismantled and destroyed at the end of each exhibition. Together, these temporary works reveal Fontana’s revolutionary approach to making art, to “open space, to create a new dimension for art, to connect it to the cosmos as we understand it, infinite, beyond the flat surface of the image.”
The Ambienti Spaziali, which are the most radical yet little known aspect of the artist’s work, move beyond any pictorial conventions, eliminating the canvas to use new technologies like neon to depict a space of pure light, putting the observer at the center of the composition.
The exhibition in Los Angeles is the first part of a trilogy: it will be followed in the spring of 2021 by an exhibition in New York on the terracotta sculptures, while an important show that retraces the artist’s career will be held at Hauser & Wirth Hong Kong in the fall of 2021.