Enrico Benassi

Antonino Mancuso Fuoco

Antonino Mancuso Fuoco was born on June 13th in 1921 in Capizzi, a little village on the Nebrodi mountains. After attending the primary school, though he was a clever student, was sent to work, but in his free time he devoted himself to the art of painting. His first shapes of expressivity were inlaid works with a Phidiac chisel, drawings with a lump of coal on stone and sometimes engravings on the cladophills of prickly pears.
During the First World War he was called to arms. In the 60s, for a short period, because of familiar troubles, he stopped in Ulm Donau (Germany) but soon after he reached Turin where he has remained for a certain period of time to work.
The chance meeting with Bolaffi who appreciated his artistic value and commissioned him some paintings was a great opportunity. For a long time the painter Mancuso had been starting to give shape to the springing colours of his loved Sicily where he will come back in 1971 to join his family (his wife Mary and his three sons).Weight down by work he will never stop following his inclination reaching gradually a pictorial style paying attention to the space and the volumes of the objects.
Mancuso paints still lives, portraits, landscapes and pure Sicilian stories.
The 1973 can be considered the year of redemption: the publication on Bolaffiarte marked his take-off among the avant-garde artists of the naïve painting. The collectors start to look at his production with more and more interest. He exhibits in Italy and abroad in well known places, like Rome, Milan, Padua, Messina, London, Crakow, Vienna, Paris, Strasbourg, Marsiglia.
At the end of the century, to coincide with his death in1996, Mancuso is already a successful man.
Nowadays we are awaiting for a retrospective in order to reveal to his birthplace the greatness of the artist Mancuso. Looking at his latest works stirs up a strong emotional effect on many young artists too.

Maria Giacoma Mancuso Fuoco

Critical Note

Mancuso’s paintings remain the only survivors of a fading tradition. Observing them, struck by a keen scrutiny, lowers us in a primitive babel in which every image is subject to a passing and relives in a vanguard dimension in which the law of “need” no longer rules.
In a spider web of represented actions mature colors that suit the complexity of the theme, thought of and developed on a surface orchestrated in a perspective dimension and its opposite.
They can be creased by a few disorganized circumvolutions with a human touch but they condense the flash of a luminous age that was of the living that have now become untouchable shadows.
Fragments of vital elements perspire with sincere fervor from an accurate interpretation in which the skill of the paintbrush surrounds the observer like a question mark.
Bucolic every day life interspersed by episodes of existence end up piling up tales tied to the elementary life that the painter Mancuso explodes through his images.

Alessandra Iraci Tobbi

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