01 November - 03 February 2024
Agostino Bonalumi il teatro delle forze (a theatre of forces)
Private View: Wednesday 1 November 2023, 6pm – 10pm
The exhibition, curated by Marco Scotini, will focus on one of the most remarkable phases of Bonalumi’s creative activity (from the late 1960s through the 1970s), but will begin by exploring two of Bonalumi’s lesser-known works which require a multidisciplinary approach to their exploration. Alongside a rich selection of large-scale plastic and or three-dimensional works, the show will also present a series of original documents and sketches, thanks to the collaboration with the Archivio Bonalumi in Milan, the Fondazione Cini in Venice and loans from the Archivio Storico of Rome’s Teatro dell’Opera and and Fondazione Egri per la Danza, Turin. The exhibition, curated by Marco Scotini, will focus on one of the most remarkable phases of Bonalumi’s creative activity (from the late 1960s through the 1970s), but will begin by exploring two of Bonalumi’s lesser-known works which require a multidisciplinary approach to their exploration.
Agostino Bonalumi: il Teatro delle Forze focuses on the sets and costumes created for the ballet Partita, conceived and choreographed by Susanna Egri, with music by Goffredo Petrassi and the “choreographic” action” Rot by Domenico Guaccero and Amedeo Amodio, staged respectively at the Teatro Romano in Verona in 1970 and the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome in 1973.
The title of the exhibition directly references the ‘theatrical machine’ as an object, while also alluding to the plastic forces which each of Bonalumi’s works embodies. Within even Bonalumi’s earliest works, it is evident that there is “a force that presses from within the work, everting the surface”, with each work born out of the dialogue between the internal pressures of a body and the external resistance with which the surface of the canvas opposes.
Thus, a theatre of forces is undoubtably at work in Bonalumi’s monochromatic plastic works, representing the many forces within theatre itself, in which there is a thing and its opposite, two entities (or two masks) in conflict. With this concept in mind, it is no wonder that the two theatrical spaces of Partita and Rot became the settings par excellence for Bonalumi’s plastic-dynamic research. As a result of this, these great theatrical spaces are also a platform which allows us to evaluate Bonalumi’s shift from painting to this plastic environment.
The exhibition Agostino Bonalumi: il Teatro delle Forze thereby intends to underline the central role of the artist’s involvement with the theatre. Alongside the major works in the show, sketches of scenery and costumes and original stage photos of the two performances will be exhibited.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue devoted to Bonalumi’s experiences of musical theatre, drawing on scholars from multiple disciplines.
Piazza Solferino, 2