Milan, 1930 – Milan, 2004
Dadamaino, born Eduarda Emilia Maino, is an Italian artist. She first studied pharmacy and discovered her artistic vocation later in life.
In the 1950s, she frequented a group of young artists who were followers of Fontana. They represented the post-war Milan avant-garde, the same artists who elected the iconic Jamaica bar as their favorite hang- out: Piero Manzoni, Gianni Colombo, Enrico Castellani, Agostino Bonalumi. Dadamaino immediately joined the Azimuth group, founded by Manzoni, and the Zero group, formed by Heinz Mack, Otto Piene and Günther Uecker.
She developed her own personal vision, inspired by a reversal of mass production, typical of the industrial age, and her work was shown in the Netherlands, Belgium, England, Germany, France, Spain and Switzerland. She gained more recognition abroad than she did in Italy.
With Getulio Alviani, Bruno Munari and Enzo Mari, she was one of the founders of the Nuova Tendenza, and participated in numerous exhibitions around the world as part of that group. She started organizing her work around a visual alphabet of sixteen signs, which she called “mental alphabet”.
Her works entitled Volume, large canvases with cut-out elliptical holes and evocative of Fontana’s works, revealed her ability to express a feeling of lightness. A feminist and social activist, she participated in the protest movements that emerged in 1968, and supported the project of “House of the Artists” in Milan, by participating in manifestations in favor of the arts, alongside Luciano Fabro, Jole De Sanna and Hidetoshi Nagasawa.
She was invited to show her work at the Venice Biennial twice, first in 1980 with her cycle I fatti della vita (The Facts of Life), and in 1990 with Il movimento delle cose (The Movement of Things).
Dadamaino’s works are housed in many collections such as the Tate in London, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and the Foundation of Concrete Art in Reutlingen, Germany.
Dadamaino died in Milan in 2004.
exhibition catalogue edited by Tornabuoni Art Paris. Text by Ilaria Bignotti. B/w and colored illustrations, 63 pages, 9,6×6,8 in, French/English, 2020.
Utopia. Italian Art & Design
exhibition catalogue edited by Tornabuoni Art Paris. Texts by Charles Zana and Flavia Frigeri. B/w and colored illustrations, 72 pages, 6,6×9,6 in, English, 2019.
Boom. Art and Industry in 1960s Italy
exhibition catalogue edited by Tornabuoni Art London and Flavia Frigeri. Texts by Flavia Frigeri and Ursula Casamonti. B/w and colored illustrations, 92 pages, 11×8,2 in, English, 2018.
exhibition catalogue edited by Tornabuoni Arte. Texts by Bernard Blistène and Flaminio Gualdoni. B/w and colored illustrations, 176 pages, 9,8×12 in, Italian/English, 2014.
exhibition catalogue edited by Tornabuoni Art Paris. Texts by Bernard Blistène and Flaminio Gualdoni. B/w and colored illustrations, 178 pages, 9,8×12,2 in, French/English, 2013.