18 June - 24 July 2014

Including works by:
Fausto Melotti, Giulio Paolini

Austin / Desmond present their summer exhibition of works by two Italian modern masters Fausto Melotti and Giulio Paolini. The exhibition includes collages by Paolini and Sculptures by Melotti.

Giulio Paolini (b.1940). A leading figure In the Italian Arte Povera movement, Giulio Paolini’s work is considered the most conceptual amongst his contemporaries. Trained as a graphic designer, the Turin based artist rejected painting as a vehicle for depiction and focused on the exploration of what constitutes art, offering an investigation into painting itself.  Paolini often references classical sculpture with cutouts of Corinthian columns and classical busts – in doing so he raises questions of originality whilst analsying the relationship of past present and future. A motif often seen in Paolini’s work is that of a blank or back of a canvas, leaving the original painting obscured. In doing this Paolini challenges the viewers preconceived ideas of what an art work should be, subverting expectations and leaving the viewer with a sense of ambiguity.

Born in 1940 in Genoa, Paolini’s first solo exhibition was held at La Salita, Rome 1964, at the invitation of Germano Celant he exhibited in a series of Arte Povera exhibitions from 1967-1972 and was included in dOCUMENTA, Kassel in 1972, 77, 82, and 1992. Forthcoming exhibitions include To be or Not to be at the Whitechapel gallery, London July 2014.

Fausto Melotti (1901 - 1986). During the course of the 20th century Fausto Melotti became one of Italy’s most important and renowned sculptor’s. A former student of Maths and Physics, with a degree in electrical engineering, Melotti’s work combines his understanding of geometrical language with elements of theatre, music and poetry. He became best known for his slender and rhythmically balanced brass constructions. Although post war years saw a strong figuration in his work, with the creation of miniature theatres or Teatrinis, the 1960s brought a returned modernist influence. The exhibition features a number of Melotti’s late sculptures from the 1960s 70s and 80s the majority made with brass wire and sheeting. These delicate works have drawn comparisons with the lightness of Alexander Calder’s mobiles and the surreal sculptures of Alberto Giacometti.

Melotti participated in the first collective exhibition of Italian abstract art held in Turin in 1938 and went on to have his first solo exhibition in 1939 at the Galleria del Milione, Milan. Melotti was posthumously awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale in 1986.

Also on display are works by Marina Apollonio, Lucio Fontana, Luigi Ghirri, Antonio Scaccabarozzi and Franco Vaccari as well as contemporary furniture by Temper Studio

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