Kettle's Yard is delighted to announce the first UK show by one of Italy's major post-war artists. Focusing on his work from 1958 Â 1970, the exhibition traces Castellani's attempts to explore the expressive potential of the two-dimensional surface.
Kettle's Yard is delighted to announce the first UK show by one of Italy's
major post-war artists. Focusing on his work from 1958 Â 1970, the
exhibition traces Castellani's attempts to explore the expressive potential
of the two-dimensional surface. Through the use of simple repetition he
reduces the painted canvas to its essentials: space, light and the
dimension of time. His series of large monochromatic reliefs, with their
characteristic alternation of points and punctures, create rhythmic
surfaces of enormous purity and beauty.
In 1959, Castellani produced the first of his structured surfaces by putting nuts behind the canvas to form reliefs in order to emphasise the physicality of the surface as well as the dynamism of space. He went on to develop the technique that was to become characteristic of all subsequent work, of putting nails into a framework that underlay the canvas, which was then treated as a monochrome surface so that it would be as immaterial as possible. The colour of his earlier works gradually gave way to a concentration on white. For me white is not a colour, but rather the absence of colour. Just as in the treatment of the surfaces of my works I seek to create something as objective as possible, the same applies to colour.
Originally trained as an architect, Castellani moved to Brussels to study at the AcadÃ©mie Royale des Beaux-Arts, before moving to Milan in 1956, at the age of 26. With Piero Manzoni, he founded the hugely influential, though short-lived, magazine Azimuth, and the gallery Azimut, which were revolutionary in their impact upon Italian art. In his 1965 Manifesto of Minimalism Donald Judd identified Castellani, with Yves Klein, as the two most important European precursors of minimalism and conceptualism. Together with Fontana's "slashes", Castellani's surfaces in relief constitute one of the most outstanding stylistic developments of the period.
Curated by Germano Celant, the exhibition has been organised in collaboration with Fondazione Prada, Milan, and contains about thirty works from public and private collections throughout Europe. The exhibition will be accompanied by a substantial catalogue (Â£30).
Image: Enrico Castellani, Superficie nera 1959
There will be a special priivate view in the presence of the artist on 4 May at 6pm.
coming next . . .
The Kettle's Yard Open
29 June Â 21 July 2002
Kettle's Yard, Castle Street, Cambridge CB3 0AQ
tel +44 (0)1223 352124