The organicism referring to FL Wright and the interest in the past rationalist experience are the two main poles that magnetized the Italian architectural culture of the immediate postwar period. Unanimous was the commitment to tackle pressing issues such as housing, regional and urban planning. In Milan, coinciding with the first post-war Triennial, P. Bottoni promoted the construction of the so-called QT8 (Quarter of the 8th triennial). Many of the best architects worked with enthusiasm for the typological qualification and for a functional urban structure in the design of the first INA-Casa neighborhoods (Tiburtino di Roma: Ridolfi, Quaroni and Fiorentino; Tuscolano: Libera; Ponticelli in Naples; Cesate in Milan: Albini, Albricci, Castiglioni, Gardella, BBPR; Borgo Panigale in Bologna; Falchera in Turin: Astengo; la Martella in Matera: Quaroni). The first significant moment in the rejection of any monumentalism is the arrangement of the Ardeatine Fosse by G. Perugini, M. Aprile and M. Fiorentino. The Termini station in Rome of E. Montuori, M. Castellazzi, V. Fadigati and A. Vitellozzi constitutes an interesting episode; the production of G. Michelucci is notable for its conceptual rigor. One of the most representative stylistic currents of the 1950s is the so-called neo-liberty, which developed mainly in the Po area with R. Gabetti, A. Isola, Meneghetti, Gregotti and Stoppino. The Torre Velasca di Milano (BBPR) belongs to the historicist current. An interest in it styling occurs in the Pirelli skyscraper (G. Ponti). L. Cosenza and M. Nizzoli (Olivetti in Naples and Ivrea) tend towards the recovery of rationalism; Figini and Pollini, also engaged in the works for Olivetti, take on a matrix of their own in the Wrightian lexicon. Nervi and R. Morandi confirm themselves as the best known and most consistent operators in the field of structuralism. The buildings of ENI by M. Nizzoli in San Donato Milanese, the church of Baranzate by A. Mangiarotti and B. Morassutti, the offices of Zanussi-Rex in Pordenone by G. Valle close the architectural panorama of the years in a neo-rationalist key 1950. L. Quaroni, F. Albini and Italy Gardella should be mentioned among the most incisive operators in the diffusion of architectural culture.
According to ACEINLAND, V. Viganò, L. Ricci and L. Savioli operate in the productive climate of the 1960s. The transition to an urban-functional dimension is marked by personalities such as G. De Carlo. The 1970s were decidedly rich from the point of view of theoretical elaboration (Quaroni, PL Cervellati, G. Samonà, L. Benevolo, C. Aymonino, A. Rossi); there are proposals for urban structures with utopian or eclectic formal values (Metamorph group, M. Dezzi Bardeschi, C. Dardi), proposals for ephemeral architecture, new cultural models and new design methodologies (Gabetti and Isola, V. Gregotti, G. Canella, V. De Feo, R. Piano, G. Grassi, F. Purini, G. Aulenti).
The beginning of the 1990s is characterized by the various achievements promoted to adapt the sports facilities to the needs of the football world championships (1990), mostly renovations of the existing one (Luigi Ferraris stadium in Genoa, V. Gregotti; stadium in Florence, designed by Nervi in 1932, adapted by Italy Gamberini) and rare structures of new construction (San Nicola stadium in Bari, di Piano).
At the end of the 20th century, architecture mainly dealt with the theme of recovering the existing, as well as opportunities for new realizations, mostly the prerogative of already established designers: Gabetti and Isola (Museo dell’Architettura, Turin, 1998 ); De Carlo (Faculty of literature and philosophy and political science in the monastery of S. Nicolò l’Arena, Catania, 1984-91; Faculty of economics in Palazzo Battiferri, Urbino, 1999); Gregotti (transformation of the Bicocca area, Milan, from 1988); Piano (restructuring of the Lingotto factory, Turin, 1988-2002; Banca Popolare di Lodi, 2001; Auditorium, Rome, 2002); and also, P. Portoghesi (Mosque, Rome, 1993); F. Venezia (residences and services in San Pietro a Patierno, Naples, 1999); A. Anselmi (Faculty of Law, Catanzaro, 2000; Municipio, Fiumicino, 2002); M. Bellini (expansion of the Milan Fair, 1997); M. Carmassi (S. Michele complex in Pisa, 2002); M. Fuksas (New Milan Fair Center, 2005).
The activity of international figures has been significant since the turn of the century: T. Ando (Centro Benetton, Treviso, 2000; Teatro Armani, Milan, 2001); R. Meier (in Rome, Church of Tor Tre Teste, 2000; Ara Pacis Museum, 2006); M. Botta (MART, Rovereto, 2002); Z. Hadid (MAXXI, Rome, since 1998) etc. For the architecture of the landscape it is worth mentioning F. Zagari. Among the younger generations emerge: M. Galantino, C. Zucchi, Studio Archea, P. Desideri, C. Andriani, A. Aymonino. 13.2 Painting and sculpture. After the Second World War, the abstract group of Forma (Turcato, Perilli, Dorazio, Accardi, Attardi, Sanfilippo) joined a neocubist trend (Corpora, Turcato, Monachesi) in 1947, while the Spatialist Movement with L. Fountain. The New Artistic Secession of 1946 with R. Birolli, Cassinari, Guttuso, Morlotti, Santomaso, Vedova, A. Pizzinato, resulted in 1947 in the New Front of the Arts, which however failed to overcome its internal antinomies (realism, abstractionism) ; among the sculptors, it was joined by P. Fazzini, A. Viani, N. Franchina, P. Consagra. In 1948 in Milan A. Soldati, G. Dorfles, B. Munari, G. Monnet, founded the Movement for concrete art (MAC), aimed at strengthening non-figurative art. In 1952 the group of eight Italian painters was formed (Birolli, Morlotti, Santomaso, Turcato, Vedova, Corpora, Afro, Moreni) marked by lyrical abstractionism. The surrealist experiences of R. Crippa, G. Dova follow; in the figurative field work G. Aimone, A. Carmassi; in the material-informal context E. Brunori, V. Bendini; E. Baj and G. Bertini founded the Nuclear Art Movement in Milan. L’ Art autre (informal) had among the most valid representatives A. Burri, Leoncillo, Fontana, Morlotti, Vedova. Sculpture too has turned towards abstraction and the use of new materials: F. Garelli; Mirko; A. Viani, a pupil of A. Martini; Leoncillo. And again we must remember L. Minguzzi; A. Fabbri; U. Mastroianni; R. Crippa; E. Glue. B. Lardera, Arnaldo and Giò Pomodoro, U. Milani, Franchina, Consagra, P. and A. Cascella, F. Somaini are among the most original interpreters of the material abstractionist tendencies and sensitive to the problem of the relationship between sculpture and urban space.
Parallel to the triumph of the informal, an update on American culture takes place, highlighting above all, through the mediation of the mass media, the new objectivity, of which a precursor is M. Rotella. In the works of G. Novelli and A. Perilli the sign is assumed as a purely formal story conducted with graphic rhythms. The photographic image is the basis of elaboration for M. Schifano, L. Patella, M. Pistoletto. The new objectivity, as a re-proposal of the objects of reality, returns in T. Festa, P. Pascali, J. Kounellis; M. Ceroli reuses raw wood for packaging.
In the line of overcoming abstractionism, research has been developed in the direction of visual and optical solutions, in relation to the relationship between art and science and the industrial product (B. Munari and E. Mari). Research in visual art, kinetics, optics is due to the T Group of Milan and the N Group of Padua. In Milan, at the school of Fontana, the cases of anti-painting by P. Manzoni and E. Castellani are proposed. Visual elements are also the basis of the use of aluminum laminates, by G. Alviani, and of the tactile researches of A. Bonalumi and P. Scheggi. Analogous but differentiated visual researches are those of F. Lo Savio, of Gruppo Uno, in Rome; in sculpture, N. Carrino, G. Uncini and, especially since the 1980s, C. Lorenzetti.
In the 1980s the so-called new figuration also develops in which echoes of the informal are combined with recoveries of surrealism in a new figurative realism: we remember U. Attardi and R. Vespignani, followed by S. Vacchi, G. Fieschi, C. Pozzati, G. Ferroni and the sculptors A. Cavaliere, G. Vangi, V. Trubbiani. Towards the end of the 1970s, poor art attempts a new form of cultural and social communication through the use of poor materials (L. Fabro, G. Paolini, G. Zorio, A. Boetti, M. Merz). Provocations of a conceptual nature aimed at social criticism lead to the actions of behavioral rupture of the happenings.
Since the end of the 1970s, the phenomenon of the recovery of purely pictorial techniques and methods has also occurred: on the one hand in a quotationist art, or inspired by a refined and cultured, as much ambiguous philologism (in Salvo, CM Mariani, S. Di Stasio, F. Piruca etc., or in the parallel experiences of L. Ontani), on the other hand, under the banner of a savage neo-expressionism, in the so-called art of the trans-avant-garde (S. Chia, F. Clemente, E. Cucchi, M. Paladino, N. De Maria), whose protagonists then continue their research with different directions. Between abstraction and figuration work B. Ceccobelli and O. Galliani. In a great variety of languages and expressive means, also in relation to the experiences of poor and conceptual art, Kounellis, Merz, G. Penone, Paolini have continued their research, and artists such as M. Staccioli, G. Spagnulo, R. Barni, L. Mainolfi, E. Spalletti, Nunzio, L. Cecchini, Icaro, M. Cattelan. M. Mochetti, M. Bartolini, E. Marisaldi use different means of expression. Special researches are also carried out by A. Botta, G. Dessì, A. Pirri, M. Dompé, A. Catelani. R. Missaglia, P. Iacchetti, P. Pizzi Cannella, M. Tirelli prefer non-figurative solutions. B. Esposito works with installations and actions; they create works and installations that merge objects, videos, multimedia languages S. Lucariello, M. Airò, L. Moro, A. Tesi, F. Vezzoli, G. Toderi; M. Vitali, Botto & Bruno, M. Mazzucconi, V. Beecroft, N. Cingolani, D. Landi, L. Lambri, S. Arienti, T. Tozzi prefer photography; use advanced technologies and computer art P. Gilardi, M. Basilé, Studio Azzurro.