"Piazza del popolo"

Year: 1986
Medium:Acrylic on canvas
Status: Available
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Tano Festa was born in Rome on November 2, 1938. In 1952 he enrolled at the Art Institute in Via Conte Verde in Rome and graduated in 1957 in "Artistic Photography" with professor Alberto Libero Ferretti. He tells how Festa was attracted above all by the effects of the chemical reaction, which is obtained in the darkroom by throwing acid directly onto photographic paper. Since the beginning the companions of Tano Festa are his peers, Mario Schifano and Franco Angeli, and others a little younger like Renato Mambor and Sergio Lombardo. With them matured a friendship destined to last for a long time, a friendship that extended to other young artists, Giosetta Fioroni, Cesare Tacchi, Jannis Kounellis, Mario Ceroli, Umberto Bignardi, and that marked a happy season of art in Rome. Cesare Vivaldi in an article that appeared in 1963 in "Il Verri" recognized an affinity of expression to this group of artists that he defined: "Young school of Rome". The epithet also had a different and well-known declension in: School of Piazza del Popolo, from the name of the square where artists and men of letters used to meet, around the tables of Caffè Rosati or in the seat of the gallery La Tartaruga. Since the beginning Tano Festa wrote poetry, a marginal activity compared to painting, but practiced throughout his life, as well as constant was his interest in literature and poets, such as Sandro Penna, who was a close friend of his. It is said that in 1955 Festa gave poetry to passers-by on the Spanish Steps, written on sheets of paper illustrated by his friend Ettore Sordini. In 1959 Tano Festa arrived at Gian Tomaso Liverani's La Salita gallery, at the time one of the most prestigious exhibition venues in Rome for contemporary art. He initially exhibited in a group show, together with Franco Angeli and Giuseppe Uncini. "Since his first experiences", it is written by Tano Festa in the card distributed on the occasion of the exhibition, "has revealed particular interest in some trends of European and American abstract surrealism". In the '60s he welcomed new dada solutions, proposing isolated monochrome objects for everyday use. Famous are the shutters, mirrors and windows, which become a support for his work as a painter. Since 1963 Festa has also dwelt on the masters of Italian tradition and the Renaissance, in particular Michelangelo of the Sistine and Medici Chapels, interpreted as advertising images (Da Michelangelo, n. I, 1966, private collection), ("Dal Peccato Originale n. 2", 1966, private collection). He was invited to participate in the Quadriennale di Roma in 1965. After a difficult period of lack of creativity and disappointing recognition by critics, he was invited to the Venice Biennale in 1980. During the last years of his fulminant existence, in the places on the outskirts of Rome, the shacks and the last hosterie fuoriporta conceives, giving birth to 'the light of Egypt', geometric-conceptual works. He died in Rome in 1988 after a long illness.

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