The present work was in the former collection of the painter Guy Vandenbranden (1926-2014). Yoeri Vanlangendonck, whose gallery Callewaert-Vanlangendonck owns the estate of the painter Vandenbranden, confirms hereby that the painter had a Achrome in his possession, given by Manzoni personally. Vandenbranden gave this work to his friend and maecenas, doctor and psychiatrist T.Piron at his birthday, somewhere in the 1960s. Vandenbranden would have had regrets about this gift.
The work is one of the earliest 'achromes' Manzoni made from 1957 on and one of the most important exemples of the narrow liason between the Antwerp group G58 and the international avant-garde scene ZERO, also from 1958. Manzoni and Vandenbranden apparently met eachother in Milan, in Bar Jamaica around 1958 together with a.o. Lucio Fontana and Jef Verheyen. Vandenbranden in a letter from 1989: 'A lot of Antwerp painters (Jef Verheyen, Walter Leblanc, Marc Verstockt and myself) travelled to Düsseldorf where we met people from the ZERO group (Mack, Piene, Uecker), to Holland and to Milan where we met Manzoni, Crippa, Fontana, a.o. . (source: Vandenbranden in: David Vermeiren, Guy Vandenbranden. Inner Circle, Antwerp, 2016, p. 174)
The former partner of Manzoni, Nanda Vigo, remembers these meetings: 'I remember well Guy Vandenbranden, a very kind man and I remember also that I met him in occasion of Piero's show in Bruxelles but unfortunately I don't have any photos with him and Piero (...)' (e-mail between Vigo and Vanlangendonck, 30 august 2016).
The strong relation between the artists in Belgium and Italy led to exhibitions in Galleria Pater, the gallery of Manzoni in Milan in 1959 and 1960. Manzoni himself participated with 14 works in the show of the ZERO mouvement in the Antwerp Hessenhuis, September 1959."
The work will be offered on March 20 at Bernaerts Auctioneers