An excerpt from
S P A T I A L S
« The work of art is eternal, but cannot be immortal. It is eternal because one of its gestures, as any other gesture made, cannot not to remain in the spirit of man like a perpetuated race. So the paganism, the Christianity, and anything else that belonged to the spirit, are accomplished and eternal gestures that remain and will always persist in the same spirit of man. But being eternal absolutely doesn’t mean being immortal. Indeed, it is never immortal. It might live for a year or for millennia, but the time of its material destruction will always come. It will persist as the gesture, but it will die as matter… We are thinking to release art from the matter, to untie the sense of eternity from the concern of the immortality. And we don’t care that a gesture, once performed, might live for a moment or for a millennium, because we are truly convinced that once performed, it is eternal.
Today the human spirit tends, in a transcendent reality, to transcend the particular in order to reach the Unity, the Universal, through the act of the spirit released from any matter. We refuse to believe that science and art are distinct fields, and therefore the exploits realized in one cannot also belong to the other. The artists anticipate scientific feats, and scientific feats always create artistic ones. Neither radio not television can be results of the human spirit without the urgency that goes from the science to art …
… We are convinced that, after this fact, nothing of the past will be destroyed, neither means nor ends, we are convinced that we will go on painting and sculpturing using the materials of the past, but we are equally convinced that these materials, after this, will be faced and will be looked at with other hands and eyes and will be pervaded by more refined sensibility ».
I Italian manifesto compiled by Fontana, Kaisserlian, Joppolo, Milena Milani, as a conclusion of a few public debates. Milan, 1947.