Select Page

Franco Mazzucchelli

A. to A.

With Hanne Darboven, Lara Favaretto and Matt Mullican

An exhibition in two parts, in collaboration with ChertLüdde
October 28, 2023 to January 27, 2024

In the 1960s, Franco Mazzucchelli abandoned large inflatable plastic objects – rings, spirals and balls – on beaches, parks and streets. In doing so, the artist left the interpretation of his works, which he called Art to Abandon, to others. The works on display, including the video Alfa Romeo 1971, document the reactions of passers-by: the plastic objects were carried, hung around on and played with. The abandonment of the sculptures does not mark their end. It is through interaction that the works realise themselves anew.
Produced in post-war Italy, they reflect the thoughts of an entire generation of artists: How to overcome the limitations imposed by canvas and pedestal? How to bridge the gap between object and viewer? Questions to which Mazzucchelli finds his own answers. The presented group of works from the 1970s is called Art to Abandon (A. to A.). On view are black and white photographs and PVC fragments of the original sculptures, as well as a series of silkscreen prints collaged with ink writings and photographs. Together with the video Alfa Romeo 1971, they form the only documentation of his public interventions from this period.

Formally, the exhibition is complemented by works by Hanne Darboven, Matt Mullican, and Lara Favaretto, each of whom draws on Mazzucchelli’s work in their own way. The point of departure for Hanne Darboven’s Atta Troll (1989) is Heinrich Heine’s epic poem of the same name, written in 1841/42. The artist adapted the poem in 1989 and translated it into a system of musical notations. Like Mazzucchelli’s inflatable plastic sculptures, which unfold through interaction with the audience, Atta Troll becomes a piece of music, activated through play. The potential of play is also explored in Lara Favaretto’s Twistle. A whistle fills with air at regular intervals. This element of surprise brings the work immediately closer to the visitor. In Mazzucchelli’s practice the urban space also becomes an exhibition space. In Matt Mullican’s work, on the other hand, urban spaces are brought into the exhibition. The grid structure of the diptych represents abstracted city maps.

ChertLüdde Gallery presents the second chapter of the exhibition Art on Art (A. on A.), focusing on recent works from 2010 to the present. Spread over two venues in Berlin, the exhibition explores Franco Mazzucchelli’s practice by looking closely at the impact of art and how to engage a wider audience in art production and discourse.

All Images
Copyright: the artists
Courtesy: Klosterfelde Edition & ChertLüdde
Photos: Marjorie Brunet Plaza