Great exhibition not to be missed this at the Gallerie d’Italia entitled “Painting is Back”. Especially if you are very young or have kids to go with; or even if, in the Eighties, there are some consummate prejudices to dispel, perhaps about Reaganian hedonism or about Milan to drink.
The review curated by Luca Massimo Barbero, running until 3 October, shows us that the spirits and moods of the Eighties were more complex and interesting. And that for example in that period many formidable artists found themselves, independently or in groups, to rediscover the taste of painting and drawing, after years of conceptual art in which gesture and material had taken over traditional techniques.
The exhibition is openly proceeding “by lunges” but starts from afar, that is, from the group of the Transavantgarde which, by the end of the Seventies, had already begun to question everything. There are many very interesting works by Sandro Chia, Francesco Clemente, Enzo Cucchi, Mimmo Paladino, Nicola De Maria, as well as the Schifano, the Salvo, the Franco Angeli; and a couple of sublime Carol Rama full of eroticism and poetry.
Unraveling over the years and experiences, here then, among the 57 treasures that make up the exhibition, the Indian fantasies of Luigi Ontani and the “Guardian” by Mario Merz, the “Roman Night” by Franco Angeli and two great equestrian paintings by Schifano , the “Masaniello” of Ernesto Tatafiore, the “Piscine” of Alighiero Boetti, the most dazzling Rotella, the sultans of Aldo Mondino and the landscapes of Salvo’s Magna Graecia. With two absolute highlights. At the center of the first room is the installation by Studio Azzurro entitled “The swimmer (he goes too often to Heidelberg)”, two sets of 12 monitors crossed by a swimmer walking along his lane, plus an enigmatic clock that fragments time. And to dominate the last one the monstre canvas by Enrico Baj “The world of ideas”: 19 purely pataphysical meters of spray graffiti, made in 1983 but of a topicality that makes us jump (piazza Scala 6, 8/10 euro, www.gallerieditalia.com).