Sculpture, constantly present throughout the entire exhibition, acts as an introduction to the various rooms, in the works by Mauro Staccioli, Alik Cavaliere, Ettore Colla, Nicola Carrino, Mario Ceroli, Pino Pascali and Giuseppe Maraniello, is also point of reflection on the relationships with space in the room dedicated to “constructivist ideas” (which brings together art works by Gianfranco Pardi, Giuseppe Uncini, as well as by Rodolfo Aricò).
The contribution of Italian artists to reflections on sculpture of this period is particularly important. In 1945, Arturo Martini wrote notes in which he defined sculpture, specifically monumental sculpture, as a “dead language”, and suggestions for an anti-monumental concept of sculpture can be found in the ideas and works of artists who modify the relationship between their creations and space or make use of experimental materials as well as everyday themes.
The four sculptures displayed at the opening of the exhibition are emblematic of the traits of a period between the 1950s and ‘80s.
Ettore Colla is one of the first to build “assemblages” of recycled materials, bending iron into constructions that echo also mythological themes. Lucio Fontana uses materials and sculptural form at various times throughout his parable of the post World War II period, striving to go beyond the physical aspect of matter, at a time coinciding with man’s explorations into space. Alik Cavaliere offers, also in his role as teacher at Brera, a narrative sculpture, or “anti-sculpture”, in which the forms of nature are included in symbolic representations. Mauro Staccioli makes sculpture converse with public space and interprets the architectural meaning of places, producing, with the intrinsic motion of his geometries, a gap that fulfils the rationality of the structures.