Agostino Bonalumi (b. 1935, Vimercate, Italy – d. 2013, Desio, Italy) studied technical and mechanical drawing and exhibited his first works at the “Premio Nazionale Città di Vimercate” (hors concours) in 1948, when he was just thirteen years old. His first solo show was at the Galleria Totti, Milan in 1956 and he started developing the idea of what he would call “pittura – oggetto” (painting-object), following the idea to go beyond the confines of a canvas (created by Lucio Fontana).
He had strong links with the German art scene, and in 1970 he had his own personal room at the 35th Venice Biennale, in which he also installed some large environmental sculptures. There was a period when he worked and studied in the Mediterranean countries of Africa and in the USA. He lived in New York shortly and introduced his work at the Bonino Gallery.
Over the course of his career, he completed some major theatrical projects, like designing the scenery and costumes for the Partita ballet at the Teatro Romano in Verona, and creating the scenery and costumes for Rot at the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome. He died in Monza on 18 September 2013.
In October 2013, the Robilant + Voena Gallery in London presented the first retrospective specifically devoted to his work from the 1950s to the 1970s: “Agostino Bonalumi. All the Shapes of Space 1958–1976.”