An unexpected collection: new exhibition at the Gallerie d'Italia-Milan

The image that accompanies the News on the new temporary exhibition itinerary “An unexpected collection. A journey into the contemporary between painting and sculpture" at the Gallerie d'Italia-Milan, portrays the work Complex Form by Sol LeWitt

Gallerie d'Italia-Milan is hosting a new temporary exhibition itinerary entitled "Una collezione inattesa. Viaggio nel contemporaneo tra pittura e scultura" ("An unexpected collection. A journey through contemporary painting and sculpture”), featuring over 70 works not usually on display at the Milan venue, in dialogue with the permanent exhibition "Cantiere del '900" ("20th-century atelier").

The temporary exhibition itinerary, curated by Luca Massimo Barbero,  Associated Curator of the Intesa Sanpaolo Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art, focuses on the dialogue between the varying sculptural research of some of the leading exponents of the 20th century in comparison with important insights into post-World War II painting.

These include some of the most recent acquisitions from the Intesa Sanpaolo Collection and selected works from the Luigi and Peppino Agrati Collection, now part of the artistic heritage managed by Intesa Sanpaolo.

The most significant installations in the new exhibition include:

  • Femme Paysage by Jean Hans Arp (1966), a large white marble piece from the Henraux Collection (now part of Intesa Sanpaolo) that welcomes visitors to the monumental entrance area
  • an exhibition dedicated to Bruno De Toffoli, the author and signatory of one of the Spatialism Manifestos: a rare opportunity to see the artist's nine sculptures brought together
  • rooms dedicated to three great artists of the 20th century such as Arturo Martini with La Pisana, Marino Marini with Pomona and Giacomo Manzù with Grande Cardinale Seduto: works brought together here as emblematic of the roots of Italian sculpture
  • a room dedicated to Fausto Melotti with an important collection of clay works by the Maestro, shown to the public for the first time: 19 works representative of his ceramic vessels and vases, including four important korai
  • a room dedicated solely to Lucio Fontana as a clear reference to the theme of Spatialism: on display are important works including the large Concetto spaziale. Attese (1965), as well as a number of Antica Savona plates, Spatialist clay works and the important core pieces of the three Natures in bronze and terracotta
  • a room dedicated to the fresh start and monochrome palette of the international contemporary art of the early 1960s, the fulcrum of which is Sol LeWitt's sculpture Complex Form, recently added to the Intesa Sanpaolo Collections. In this space, visitors can observe the harmonious interplay between a master of American minimalism such as Robert Ryman and leading Italian artists such as Piero Manzoni, Alberto Burri, Toti Scialoja and Enrico Castellani, represented by the monumental piece Superficie bianca 35 (1966)
  • two sections devoted to pieces focusing on abstraction and sign painting dating to the late 1950s, by artists such as Carla Accardi with her work Senza Titolo, Giulio Turcato and Antonio Sanfilippo with Superficie 45/C/63. Also present is Corrado Cagli's important painting, Il flauto di canna, introducing the theme shaded by the series of sculptures by Pietro Consagra , including Bifrontale malachite, dedicated to experimentation with stone and marble
  • finally, the passage leading to the "Cantiere del '900" collection contains a series of thematically and visually linked works by artists who begin with classical abstraction and reach the post-World War II period with an increasingly minimal, procedural painting style: Bice Lazzari, Mario Nigro and Roman Opalka
  • Sol LeWitt's 1969 sculpture Three Cubes (Straight) forms the backdrop for the culmination of this journey, represented by the recently acquired Abstraktes Bild (1984) by Gerhard Richter.

The new temporary exhibition at the Gallerie d'Italia-Milan will be open to the public from 26 May to 22 October 2023.

The Milan museum, together with those of Naples, Turin and Vicenza, is part of Intesa Sanpaolo's Gallerie d'Italia museum project.