Focus on art: Lucio Fontana and Fausto Melotti | In dialogue | Part 2

April 14, 2020

Focus on Art is a  video series by M&L Fine Art, presenting iconic artworks by key artists of the gallery programme. This is the second episode in a cycle of three videos on the friendship and creative relationship betwen Fausto Melotti and Lucio Fontana, addressing Fontana's extraordinary development of spatialism.



Upon his return to Europe from Argentina, in 1947, Lucio Fontana had already drafted his first Manifesto Spaziale. From that moment, his “idee precise,” or precise ideas, as Melotti himself recalled, impelled a radical, new path in Fontana’s career. Space was entirely redefined through the symbolic rupture of the pictorial surface: its perspective and illusion forever banished.


Fontana’s assertive gesture thus revealed the existence of unexplored dimensions: cosmological, infinite, hitherto shielded by the physical barrier of the canvas. With this realization came the urgency for a new designation, Concetto Spaziale, destined to imprint itself on nearly all works from 1949 onwards.


In 1958, after a decade of highly choreographed surfaces enriched by oil paint, shards of glass and other minerals, Fontana once more purified his practice with the introduction of a new conceptual breakthrough: Attesa.


Waiting: in the grace of a gesture. Spatial calm, cosmic rigor, serenity in infinity. The absolute revelation of space: as we glimpse into the possibility of an unknown spatial dimension, we hold our breaths, and wait. Time itselsf, suspended, waits.