Lucio Fontana (19 February 1899 – 7 September 1968) was an Italian painter, sculptor and theorist of Argentine birth. He was mostly known as the founder of Spatialism and his ties to Arte Povera.
Born in Rosario, province of Santa Fe, Argentina of Italian parents, he was the son of the sculptor Luigi Fontana (1865 — 1946). Fontana spent the first years of his life in Italy and came back to Argentina in 1905, where he stayed until 1922, working as a sculptor along with his father, and then on his own. Already in 1926, he participated in the first exhibition of Nexus, a group of young Argentine artists working in Rosario de Santa Fe.
In 1927 Fontana returned to Italy and studied under the sculptor Adolfo Wildt, at Accademia di Brera from 1928 to 1930. It was there where he presented his first exhibition in 1930, organized by the Milano art gallery Il Milione. During the following decade he journeyed Italy and France, working with abstract and expressionist painters. In 1935 he joined the association Abstraction-Création in Paris and from 1936 to 1949 made expressionist sculptures in ceramic and bronze. In 1939, he joined the Corrente, a Milan group of expressionist artists.
In 1940 he returned to Argentina. In Buenos Aires (1946) he founded the Altamira academy together with some of his students, and made public the White Manifesto, where it is stated that "Matter, colour and sound in motion are the phenomena whose simultaneous development makes up the new art". In the text, which Fontana did not sign but to which he actively contributed, he began to formulate the theories that he was to expand as Spazialismo, or Spatialism, in five manifestos from 1947 to 1952. Upon his return from Argentina in 1947, he supported, along with writers and philosophers, the first manifesto of spatialism (Spazialismo). Fontana had found his studio and works completely destroyed in the Allied bombings of Milan, but soon also resumed his ceramics works in Albisola. In Milan, he collaborated with noted Milanese architects to decorate several new buildings that were part of the effort to reconstruct the city after the war.
Following his return to Italy in 1948 Fontana exhibited his first Ambiente spaziale a luce nera (Spatial Environment) (1949) at the Galleria del Naviglio in Milan, a temporary installation consisting of a giant amoeba-like shape suspended in the void in a darkened room and lit by neon light. From 1949 on he started the so-called Spatial Concept or slash series, consisting in holes or slashes on the surface of monochrome paintings, drawing a sign of what he named "an art for the Space Age". He devised the generic title Concetto spaziale (‘spatial concept’) for these works and used it for almost all his later paintings. These can be divided into broad categories: the Buchi (‘holes’), beginning in 1949, and the Tagli (‘slashes’), which he instituted in the mid-1950s.
Fontana often lined the reverse of his canvases with black gauze so that the darkness would shimmer behind the open cuts and create a mysterious sense of illusion and depth. He then created an elaborate neon ceiling called "Luce spaziale" in 1951 for the Triennale in Milan. In his important series of Concetto spaziale, La Fine di Dio (1963–64), Fontana uses the egg shape. With his Pietre (stones) series, begun in 1952, Fontana fused the sculptural with painting by encrusting the surfaces of his canvases with heavy impasto and colored glass. In his Buchi (holes) cycle, begun in 1949-50, he punctured the surface of his canvases, breaking the membrane of two-dimensionality in order to highlight the space behind the picture. From 1958 he purified his paintings by creating matte, monochrome surfaces, thus focusing the viewer’s attention on the slices that rend the skin of the canvas. In 1959 Fontana exhibited cut-off paintings with multiple combinable elements (he named the sets quanta), and began Nature, a series of sculptures made by cutting a gash across a sphere of terracotta clay, which he subsequently cast in bronze.
Fontana engaged in many collaborative projects with the most important architects of the day, in particular with Luciano Baldessari, who shared and supported his research for Spatial Light – Structure in Neon (1951) at the 9th Triennale and, among other things, commissioned him to design the ceiling of the cinema in the Sidercomit Pavilion at the 21st Milan Fair in 1953.
Around 1960, Fontana began to reinvent the cuts and punctures that had characterized his highly personal style up to that point, covering canvases with layers of thick oil paint applied by hand and brush and using a scalpel or Stanley knife to create great fissures in their surface. In 1961, following an invitation to participate along with artists Jean Dubuffet, Mark Rothko, Sam Francis, and others in an exhibition of contemporary painting entitled "Art and Contemplation", held at Palazzo Grassi in Venice, he created a series of 22 works dedicated to the lagoon city. He manipulated the paint with his fingers and various instruments to make furrows, sometimes including scattered fragments of Murano glass. Fontana was subsequently invited by Michel Tapié to exhibit the works at the Martha Jackson Gallery in New York. As a consequence of his first visit to New York in 1961, he created a series of metal works, done between 1961 and 1965. The works consisted of large sheets of shiny and scratched copper, pierced and gouged, cut through by dramatic vertical gestures that recall the force of New York construction and the metal and glass of the buildings.
Among Fontana’s last works are a series of Teatrini (‘little theatres’), in which he returned to an essentially flat idiom by using backcloths enclosed within wings resembling a frame; the reference to theatre emphasizes the act of looking, while in the foreground a series of irregular spheres or oscillating, wavy silhouettes creates a lively shadow play. Another work from that time, Trinità (Trinity) (1966), consists of three large white canvases punctuated by lines of holes, embraced in a theatrical setting made from ultramarine plastic sheets vaguely resembling wings.
In the last years of his career, Fontana became increasingly interested in the staging of his work in the many exhibitions that honored him worldwide, as well as in the idea of purity achieved in his last white canvases. These concerns were prominent at the 1966 Venice Biennale, for which he designed the environment for his work. At Documenta IV in Kassel in 1968, he positioned a large, plaster slash as the centre of a totally white labyrinth, including ceiling and floor (Ambiente spaziale bianco).
Shortly before his death he was present at the "Destruction Art, Destroy to Create" demonstration at the Finch College Museum of New York. Then he left his home in Milano and went to Comabbio (in the province of Varese, Italy), his family's mother town, where he died in 1968.
Fontana created a prolific amount of graphic work with abstract motifs as well as figures, little-known in the art world, at the same time as he was producing his abstract perforated works.
Today Fontana's works can be found in the permanent collections of more than one hundred museums around the world. In particular, examples from the Pietre series are housed in the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, the Centre Pompidou, Paris, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome, and the van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. Fontana's jewellery is included in the permanent collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Alberto Biasi was born in 1937 in Padua, Italy. He currently lives and works in Padua, Italy.
Alberto Biasi, the son of Giuseppe Biasi and Silvia Zappi Recordati, was born in Padua on 2 June 1937. His family had already produced an artist, Lavinia Fontana, a well-known name in 17th-century painting, and a poet, Tirsi Leucasio, a founder od the Arcadia academu together with Metastasio. Alberto soon lost his mother during the war and went to live with his paternal grandmother at Carrara San Giorgio, a small village in the country outside Padua, where she ran a tavern. He grew up in contact with the local people in an extended family atmosphere until his return to Padua to attend high school. This was followed by studies at the school od architecture and the advanced course of technical drawing in Venice, where he was awarded a scholarship created by Paolo Venini. These years marked the beginning of a passion for art with close study of the key 20th-century movements. Neoplasticism, Futurism and Dada are deeply rooted in the background of the young Biasi.
He started teaching technical drawing and art history in the public school system in 1958 and was assigned a permanent post as teacher of graphic arts applied to advertising, which he held uninterruptedly from 1969 to 1988. His own artistic activity took shape at the same time, and he received the first prize at the 4th Cittadella Youth Biennal from the hands of Virgilio Guidi in 1959, the first public award won by an artist who, though young, was already developinh various stimuli, political ideals and artistic concerns. The Group N was founded in Padua and Biasi, its guiding spirit, worked with it until its definitive dissolution in 1967. His contacts very soon extended to the national and internation level, and he exhibited work in the 1960s with Manzoni and Castellani as well as the European artists of the New Artistic Conception group. Fully involved in the ferment of those innovative years, he joined the Nuove Tendenze movement in 1961 and took part in the founding of the Arte Programmata movement in 1962 together with the rest of the Group N, Bruno Munari, Enzo Mari and the Group T.
Biasi based his own art on new canons in those early years. Interaction between the viewer and the work became an indispensable cornerstone and movement - in the passive sense of virtual motion, the appearance of movement - led the artist to address the problems of kinetics and the associated investigation of visual perception and the individual reaction to luminous stimuli. The activity of this periodi is marked by the Trame (Patterns), an initial study of the interference of the movement of vision and natural light on a layered static surface of natural character developed through the observation of complex and primitive elements like beehives. Alongside the Trame, he was soon producing Rilievi ottico-dinamici (Optical-Dynamic Reliefs) of laminar structures in contrasting colours superimposed so as to produce a visual event that depends on the movement of the spectator, who thus becomes an "actor" jointly involved in the work. The other series that made their appearance in this period include Forme dinamiche (Dynamic Forms) obtained throungh the torsion of thin sheets od material laid out in rigorously calculated geometric arrangements on backgrounds of different colours, Fotoriflessioni (Photoreflections) in real motion, and perceptually instable Ambienti (Environments), ever-changing atmospheres of light and liquid in motion. Prime examples of the latter include Grande Tuffo nell'arcobaleno (Great Dive into the rainbow), Eco (Echo), and the triptych Io sono, tu sei, egli è… quindi siamo (I am, you are, he is… therefore we are).
The Group N had broken up in the meantime, thus marking the end of a collective approach adopted as a result of strong political and ideological commitment (exemplified by the fact that Biasi described himself during this period as an "artistic operator", thus stressing the social aspect of this activity). He continued on a solo basis developing themes that have been his "happy obsession" ever since. His civic commitment has, however, also continued over the years with full participation in the life of the city. As director of Padua's provincial agency of tourism in the late 1970s and early 1980s he developed cultural and artistic projects regarding Padua, its cultural history and its surrounding natural environment. Meanwhile, his art went through new phases of study and experimentation. Deeper investigation of the impact of natural light led to the Politipi (Polytypes), a new series of works of unquestionable hypnotic power produced by means of torsions, the superimposing of planes and the interweaving of sheets and strips of material, thus interacting in the pursuit of harmonic movement with the third dimension of depth, alluded to more than actually addressed. The Politipi of the 1970s evolved in the following decade with elements of figuration. The perceptual effects became increasingly complex, attracted by a digural focus that encloses further three-dimensional effects of depth, illusions or realities of the light intercepted in the layer of superimposed material. The interplay between spectator-actor and work became increasingly structured and free, and form was enriched with readily recognizable images of which the eye can be confidently certain. Lurking within and circumscribed by them were, however, new optical "tricks" caused by the manipulation of light, which changes together with the shiftinh of viewpoint, thus attesting to and confirming the absolute variable od perception in the spectator. Thus questioned and challenged in the large-scale exhibition at the Museo degli Eremitani, padua, in 1988, the public responded enthusiastically with a great turnout (42.000 visitors).
The Politipi were then enriched in the 1990s with an element previuosly somewhat overlooked by Alberto Biasi, namely painting, through the insertion of colour, traces, shadows and allusions as a supporting counterpoint to the complex structure of layered surfaces. The resulting Assemblaggi (Assemblages), often produced as diptychs and triptychs, have developed in recent years an increasingly rigorous, coherent and severe handling of colour tending towards the monochromatic. In the combination and superimposition od assembled surfaces, the extreme rigor of monochrome highlights the "breaking point" of crisis in the linear reading, where the planes of colour converge in a three-dimensional source, thus alluding to an energy-generating space. And it is this space that costitutes the starting point for Biasi's move towards sculpture, a new interest bus also one implicit in his oeuvre as a whole. Weathering steel, aluminium and methacrylate are the materials used by Biasi to address the challenge of three-dimensional space in large-sized works, some of which designed for open spaces. Totems vertical slabs and interrupted spirals, helical structures of closely meshed metal pipes, became transpositions and reinventions, the results of Biasi's "happy obsession" and constant exploration in the field of visual perception.
After participation in the twelve exhibitions of the Group N, Biasi has held over one hundred solo shows and taken part in countless group events, including the Venice Biennial (32nd and 42nd), the Rome Quadrennial (10th, 11th and 14th), the Sao Paulo Biennial (11th) and the most important international biennials of graphic art. His numerous major international awards include in particular the prize obtained for the multiple Io sono in the 1973 World Print Competition jointly held by the California College od Arts and Crafts and the San Francisco Museum of Art. The exhibition of thirty works in the Hermitage, Saint Petesburg, in 2006 and the exhibition "Kaleidoscope: from Patterns to Assemblages" at the Museo del Palazzo Reale, Genoa, in 2009 were both highly successful.
Works by Biasi are to be found in the Modern Art Museum in New York, the Galleria Nazionale in Rome, the Hermitage in Saint Petesburg, the museums of Belgrade, Bolzano, Bratislava, Buenos Aires, Ciudad Bolivar, Epinal, Gallarate, Guayaquil, Livorno, Lodz, Ljubljana, Middletown, Padua, Prague, San Francisco, Saint Louis, Tokyo, Turin, Ulm, Venice, Waldenbuch, Wroclaw and Zagabria, and in numerous collections in Italy and other countries.
Paolo Scheggi(Florence, 1940 - Roma, 1971) lived in Milan since 1961, where he collaborated with the experimental stylist Germana Marucelli, and came into contact with new research in the city, such as the group around Azimuth/Azimut and the first exponents of Arte programmata. Lucio Fontana followed his research carefully since 1962. In 1965 Scheggi joined the Nove Tendencije movement, expanding his international contacts in Germany and Northern Europe, and exhibiting with artists from the Zero and Nul movements. In 1966, Gillo Dorfles included him in the “Pittura-oggetto a Milano” exhibition at Arco d’Alibert in Rome. In the same year, Scheggi participated in the Venice Biennale, where his work is also present in 1972, 1976, 1986. He exhibited at some of the major international artistic events of the time: from Paris to Buenos Aires, from New York to Hamburg, from Düsseldorf to Zagreb.
Scheggi also worked with architects, such as Nizzoli Associates (Mendini, Oliveri, Fronzoni) and with Bruno Munari at the Triennale in Milan. A seminal achiement in this spatial investigation which he developed on a large scale is the Intercamera plastica (Plastic Inter-room) presented in Milan at Galleria del Naviglio, in January 1967, and now at Centro dell’Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci (Prato). At the end of the 1960s, he moved towards theater and performing arts, and then to a more conceptual research.
Posthumous exhibitions include: Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Bologna (1976) (solo); Galleria d’arte Niccoli, Parma (2002, 2007 and 2010) (solo); The XXXVI Venice Biennale (1972); Postwar. Protagonisti Italiani, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, (2013); Intercamera Plastica e Altre Storie, Centro per L’arte contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato, (2013) (solo), Sothebys, Milan (2013).
Scheggi's work is represented in important public collections, such as Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna in Rome, Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus in Munich, Galerie der Stadt in Stuttgart, Gallerie d’Italia – Collezione Intesa Sanpaolo in Milan.
Turi Simeti was born in 1929 in Alcamo (TP)- Sicily. He lives and work in Milano.
Scheggi left Sicily in 1958 and moved to Rome, where he began to paint as an autodidact. In the following years he spent much time in London, Paris and Basel. In 1965 he was asked to join the Zero Avantgarde Group, which appeared for the first time in Milan, in Lucio Fontana's atelier. In the same year he moved from Rome to Milan. From 1966 to 1969 he spent long periods in New York, where he was invited as an "Artist in Residence" by the Fairleigh Dichinson University. Since 1969 his works have been exhibited in several international art fairs: in Koln with the Rekermann Gallery, the 44 Gallery, the Ahrens Gallery, the Wack Gallery, the Mayer Gallery; in Basel with the Liatowisch Gallery, the Luise Krohn Gallery, the Dorothea Van Der Koelen Gallery, the 44 Gallery, the Wack Gallery; in Chicago with the 44 Gallery; in Frankfurt and Bologna with the Milenium and Vismara Galleries. Since 1980 he has a studio in Rio de Janeiro, the city where he uses to spend his winters and where he has held many one-man exhibitions.
Scheggi's work can be found in public collections such as MAM (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), Museo d'Arte Moderna di Bolzano (Bolzano, Italy), Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna (Turin, Italy), and Wilhelm-Hack-Museum (Ludwigshafen, Germany).
Simeti is considered a true pioneer of 20th and 21st Century Italian art. Minimalist in conception, for the last 50 years, Simeti's work has comprised of dynamic patterns of ovals that dance across the monochromatic surfaces of shaped canvases. This focused combination of color and shape speaks to Simeti's concern with emphasizing the physical presence of the artwork itself, rather than an expression of the artist's voice. Just as Fontana helped found Spazialismo with his punctured canvases, for decades Simeti has broken through key tenants of minimalism to explore the play of light on shapes created on monochromatic and tactile canvas surfaces.
Keith Allen Haring (May 4, 1958 – February 16, 1990) was an American artist and social activist whose work responded to the New York City street culture of the 1980s by expressing concepts of birth, death, sexuality, and war. Haring's work was often heavily political and his imagery has become a widely recognized visual language of the 20th century.
He developed a love for drawing at a very early age, learning basic cartooning skills from his father and from the popular culture around him, such as Dr. Seuss and Walt Disney.
In 1978 Haring moved to New York City and enrolled in the School of Visual Arts (SVA). In New York, Haring found a thriving alternative art community that was developing outside the gallery and museum system, in the downtown streets, the subways and spaces in clubs and former dance halls. Here he became friends with fellow artists Kenny Scharf and Jean-Michel Basquiat, as well as the musicians, performance artists and graffiti writers that comprised the burgeoning art community. Haring was swept up in the energy and spirit of this scene and began to organize and participate in exhibitions and performances at Club 57 and other alternative venues.
In addition to being impressed by the innovation and energy of his contemporaries, Haring was also inspired by the work of Jean Dubuffet, Pierre Alechinsky, William Burroughs, Brion Gysin and Robert Henri's manifesto The Art Spirit, which asserted the fundamental independence of the artist. With these influences Haring was able to push his own youthful impulses toward a singular kind of graphic expression based on the primacy of the line. Also drawn to the public and participatory nature of Christo's work, in particular Running Fence, and by Andy Warhol's unique fusion of art and life, Haring was determined to devote his career to creating a truly public art.
As a student at SVA, Haring experimented with performance, video, installation and collage, while always maintaining a strong commitment to drawing. In 1980, Haring found a highly effective medium that allowed him to communicate with the wider audience he desired, when he noticed the unused advertising panels covered with matte black paper in a subway station. He began to create drawings in white chalk upon these blank paper panels throughout the subway system. Between 1980 and 1985, Haring produced hundreds of these public drawings in rapid rhythmic lines, sometimes creating as many as forty "subway drawings" in one day. This seamless flow of images became familiar to New York commuters, who often would stop to engage the artist when they encountered him at work. The subway became, as Haring said, a "laboratory" for working out his ideas and experimenting with his simple lines.
Between 1980 and 1989, Haring achieved international recognition and participated in numerous group and solo exhibitions. His first solo exhibition in New York.was held at the Westbeth Painters Space in 1981. In 1982, he made his Soho gallery debut with an immensely popular and highly acclaimed one-man exhibition at the Tony Shafrazi Gallery. During this period, he also participated in renowned international survey exhibitions such as Documenta 7 in Kassel; the São Paulo Biennial; and the Whitney Biennial. Haring completed numerous public projects in the first half of the 80's as well, ranging from an animation for the Spectacolor billboard in Times Square, designing sets and backdrops for theaters and clubs, developing watch designs for Swatch and an advertising campaign for Absolut vodka; and creating murals worldwide.
In April 1986, Haring opened the Pop Shop, a retail store in Soho selling T-shirts, toys, posters, buttons and magnets bearing his images. Haring considered the shop to be an extension of his work and painted the entire interior of the store in an abstract black on white mural, creating a striking and unique retail environment. The shop was intended to allow people greater access to his work, which was now readily available on products at a low cost. The shop received criticism from many in the art world, however Haring remained committed to his desire to make his artwork available to as wide an audience as possible, and received strong support for his project from friends, fans and mentors including Andy Warhol.
Throughout his career, Haring devoted much of his time to public works, which often carried social messages. He produced more than 50 public artworks between 1982 and 1989, in dozens of cities around the world, many of which were created for charities, hospitals, children's day care centers and orphanages. The now famous Crack is Wack mural of 1986 has become a landmark along New York's FDR Drive. Other projects include; a mural created for the 100th anniversary of the Statue of Liberty in 1986, on which Haring worked with 900 children; a mural on the exterior of Necker Children's Hospital in Paris, France in 1987; and a mural painted on the western side of the Berlin Wall three years before its fall. Haring also held drawing workshops for children in schools and museums in New York, Amsterdam, London, Tokyo and Bordeaux, and produced imagery for many literacy programs and other public service campaigns.
Haring was diagnosed with AIDS in 1988. In 1989, he established the Keith Haring Foundation, its mandate being to provide funding and imagery to AIDS organizations and children's programs, and to expand the audience for Haring's work through exhibitions, publications and the licensing of his images. Haring enlisted his imagery during the last years of his life to speak about his own illness and generate activism and awareness about AIDS.
During a brief but intense career that spanned the 1980s, Haring's work was featured in over 100 solo and group exhibitions. In 1986 alone, he was the subject of more than 40 newspaper and magazine articles. He was highly sought after to participate in collaborative projects ,and worked with artists and performers as diverse as Madonna, Grace Jones, Bill T. Jones, William Burroughs, Timothy Leary, Jenny Holzer, Yoko Ono and Andy Warhol. By expressing universal concepts of birth, death, love, sex and war, using a primacy of line and directness of message, Haring was able to attract a wide audience and assure the accessibility and staying power of his imagery, which has become a universally recognized visual language of the 20th century.
Keith Haring died of AIDS related complications at the age of 31 on February 16, 1990. A memorial service was held on May 4, 1990 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City, with over 1,000 people in attendance.
Since his death, Haring has been the subject of several international retrospectives. The work of Keith Haring can be seen today in the exhibitions and collections of major museums around the world.
Salvatore Scarpitta, American (1919 - 2007)
Scarpitta was born in New York City in 1919 to a Sicilian father and Polish-Russian mother. His family relocated to Los Angeles when he was six months of age. He graduated from Hollywood High School, and then attended the premier art university in Europe, the Academia di Belle Arti in Rome. He served in the United States Navy during World War II as a "Monuments Man", finding, preserving and cataloging art stolen by the Nazis. After the war, Scarpitta remained in Rome and worked from his studio on Via Margutta. During his time in Rome he was represented by the leading avant-garde modern art gallery in Italy, Galleria La Tartaruga. In 1958, Leo Castelli saw his work and asked him to move to New York and join his gallery. Scarpitta remained with Castelli until the latter's death in 1999.
From 1959 until 1992, Scarpitta had 10 one man shows at the Castelli Gallery in New York. He also was a part of many Castelli group shows that included artists such as Norman Bluhm, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, John Chamberlain and Julian Schnabel. Scarpitta's works are part of the permanent collections at the Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 in New York, Whitney Museum of American Art, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC, the Kunstsammlungen zu Weimar Museum in Germany, Civico Museo d'Arte Contemporanea in Milan, the Guttuso Museum in Italy and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. Scarpitta also exhibited at numerous Venice Biennials.
Scarpitta's work is characterized by wrapped canvasses, found and wrapped objects made into sleds, and automobile themes.
Alighiero Fabrizio Boetti known as Alighiero e Boetti (December 16, 1940 – February 24, 1994) was an Italian conceptual artist, considered to be a member of the art movement Arte Povera.
He is most famous for a series of embroidered maps of the world, Mappa, created between 1971 and his death in 1994. Boetti's work was typified by his notion of 'twinning', leading him to add 'e' (and) between his names, 'stimulating a dialectic exchange between these two selves.
From 1963 to 1965, Boetti began to create works out of then unusual materials such as plaster, masonite, plexiglass, light fixtures and other industrial materials. His first solo show was in 1967, at the Turin gallery of Christian Stein. Later that year participated in an exhibition at Galleria La Bertesca in the Italian city of Genoa, with a group of other Italian artists that referred to their works as Arte Povera, or poor art, a term subsequently widely propagated by Italian art critic Germano Celant.
Boetti continued to work with a wide array of materials, tools, and techniques, including ball pens (biro) and even the postal system. Some of Boetti's artistic strategies are considered typical for Arte Povera, namely the use the most modest of materials and techniques, to take art off its pedestal of attributed "dignity". Boetti also took a keen interest in the relationship between chance and order, in various systems of classification (grids, maps, etc.), and non-Western traditions and cultural practices, influenced by his Afghanistan and Pakistan travels.
An example of his Arte Povera work is Lampada annuale (Yearly Lamp) (1966), a single, outsized light bulb in a mirror-lined wooden box,which randomly switches itself on for eleven seconds each year. This work focuses both on the transformative powers of energy, and on the possibilities and limitations of chance - the likelihood of a viewer being present at the moment of illumination is remote. In 1967, Boetti produced the piece Manifesto, a poster listing the names of artists that make up Boetti’s creative background.
In 1967, for the i Colori series, Boetti made monochrome paintings in which he sprayed these paints on metal or masonite supports, recording the numbers and fanciful names of the colours in superimposed prefabricated cork letters. Different thematic groups emerged as Boetti combined their names with other names, race track names for instance (Oro Longchamp and Verde Ascot) or distant place names (Rosso Palermo and Beige Sahara). In 1971 Boetti made a diptych with two dates: the first, 16 December 2040, is the 100th anniversary of his birth; the second, 11 July 2023 the date of he predicted would be his own own death.
In January 1968, Boetti returned to the two-dimensionality of paper with publishing a poster in an edition of 800, containing a list of 16 Italian artists of his own generation. Next to each name were two, three, or four symbols out of a set of eight, signs whose meanings out of a set of eight, signs whose meanings were held secret but had been recorded in a letter deposited with a notary. Later that year Boetti produced an edition of 50 postcards bearing a reproduction of one of his recent works. In 1969, he created Cimento dell’armonia e dell’invenzione and with the Lavori postali series, based on the scanning of time and on the laws of mathematical permutation. By using an existing system (the post office), Boetti incorporated the element of chance in his work. Dossier Postale (1969–70) consists of a series of letters which were sent to 26 well-known recipients, primarily artists (Giulio Paolini, Bruce Nauman), art critics (Lucy Lippard, Arturo Schwarz), dealers (Konrad Fischer, Leo Castelli), and collectors (Giuseppe Panza, Corrado Levi) active at the time. Boetti sent the envelopes to imaginary addresses, thus each letter was returned to the artist undelivered, demonstrating Boetti’s preoccupation with improbability and chance. Untitled (Victoria Boogie Woogie), 1972, is made up of 42 framed postal collages, each containing 120 self-addressed, stamped envelopes of seven stamps per envelope. The letters were all mailed by the artist from different cities to himself in Turin. The number 5040, or (120 x 42 panels), or (7 x 6 x 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1), was the number of permutations that could be derived from a sequencing of the seven Italian stamps, totaling 200 lire of postage.
Boetti disassociated himself from the Arte Povera movement in 1972 and moved to Rome, without, however, completely abandoning some of its democratic, anti-elitist, strategies. In 1973, he renamed himself as a dual persona Alighiero e Boetti (“Alighiero and Boetti”) reflecting the opposing factors presented in his work: the individual and society, error and perfection, order and disorder. Already in his double-portrait I Gemelli begun in 1968 and published as a postcard, Boetti had altered photographs so that he appeared to be holding the hand of his identical twin. He trained himself to write and draw ambidextrously.
Perhaps best known is Boetti's series of large embroidered maps of the world, called simply Mappa. After the Six-Day War in June 1967 the artist began to collect newspaper covers featuring maps of war zones. Comprising twelve sheets of copper, each engraved only with the single outline of a map, Dodici forme dal 10 guigno 1967 (Twelve Shapes Starting from 10 June 1967) (1967-1971) graphically catalogues some of the world's most serious political crises between 1967 and 1971, beginning, as its title suggests, with the territories occupied by Israel at the time of the Six Day War on 10 June 1967. He then asked his wife to embroider the shapes from the June 1967 map. The embroidery, consisting of three patches of brown wool on an otherwise empty piece of cloth, looks like a "work in progress". Within a relatively short time he subsequently visited Africa, South America, the United States and East and Central Asia. He pondered the idea of the first large-scale Mappa during his second voyage to Afghanistan in 1971, resulting in a series of woven world maps entitled Territori Occupati. Between 1971 and 1979 he set up the One Hotel with his friend and business partner Gholam Dastaghir in Kabul as a kind of artistic commune and created large colourful embroideries, the most famous of these were the Mappa, world maps in which each country features the design of its national flag. In 1971, Boetti commissioned women at an embroidery school in Kabul to embroider his first map. He initially intended to make only one but went on to commission roughly 150 of them in his lifetime, with no two possessing exactly the same dimensions.
Boetti’s maps reflect a changing geopolitical world from 1971 to 1994, a period that included the collapse of the Soviet Union and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Embroidered by up to 500 artisans in Afghanistan and Pakistan, the maps were the result of a collaborative process leaving the design to the geopolitical realities of the time, and the choice of colours to the artisans responsible for the embroidery.
Boetti had his first US solo exhibition in New York at John Weber Gallery in 1973. In 1978, he held an anthological exhibition curated by Jean Christophe Ammann at the Kunsthalle Basel that featured historical works alongside more recent ones. He continued to show throughout Italy and the United States until his premature death. He was the subject of a retrospective in 1992 that traveled to Bonn and Münster, Germany, and Lucerne, Switzerland. He has been honored post-humously with several large-scale exhibitions, most notably at the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome (1996); the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Vienna in 1997; the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt am Main in 1998; Whitechapel Gallery, London (1999); and Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz. The artist took part in Documentas 5 (1972) and 7 (1982) and the Venice Biennale (1978, 1980, 1986, 1990, 1995). In 2001, the Venice Pavillon was completely dedicated to Alighiero e Boetti’s work. In 2012, the exhibition Game Plan traveled to MOMA (NYC) and Tate Modern (London).
Eduarda Emilia Maino, known publicly as Dadamaino (2 October 1930 – 13 April 2004) was an Italian painter. She was a member of the Milanese avant-garde of the 1960s.
Dadamaino first completed a medical degree before taking up art at the end of the 1950s. She frequented a group of young artists who followed Lucio Fontana and the spatialism movement. Members of the group included: Piero Manzoni, Gianni Colombo, Enrico Castellani and Agostino Bonalumi.
In 1958, Dadamaino produced a series of works called Volumi, which were exhibited in her first solo show at the Galleria dei Bossi in Milan the same year. Shortly after, Dadamaino joined Azimuth, a group funded by Piero Manzoni, and the Germany-based Group Zero formed by Heinz Mack, Otto Piene and Günther Uecker. Dadamaino counted Lucio Fontana and Yves Klein as major influences.
Dadamaino’s works can be seen in collections such as the Tate in London, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in Venice and the Foundation of Concrete Art in Reutlingen, Germany.
Dadamaino had two solo shows at the Venice Biennale in 1980 and in 1990.
1983 : Retrospective, Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea, Milan, Italy
2000 : Retrospective, Bochum museum, Bochum, Germany
2011 : "Volumes 1958-60", The Major Gallery, London, United Kingdom
2013 : Dadamaino, Le Consortium, Dijon, France
2013 : Dadamaino, Tornabuoni Art, Paris, France
Agostino Bonalumi (July 10, 1935, Vimercate – September 18, 2013, Milan) was an Italian painter, draughtsman and sculptor.
Bonalumi studied technical and mechanical drawing, and exhibited his first works at the “Premio Nazionale Citta di Vimercate” (hors concours) in 1948, when he was just thirteen years old.
He held his first solo show at the Galleria Totti, Milan, in 1956. In 1958 he began working with Enrico Castellani and Piero Manzoni, holding a group exhibition at the Galleria Pater, Milan, which was followed by further shows in Rome, Milan and Lausanne, the foundation of Azimuth magazine and his participation in exhibitions at the Azimut gallery.
He started developing the idea of what he would call “pittura – oggetto” (painting-object), following the idea to go beyond the canvas started by their mentor Lucio Fontana. In 1959 he held his first solo show outside Italy in Rotterdam. In 1960 he was one of the founders of the international Nouvelle École Européenne (NEE) movement in Lausanne and his solo exhibition “Agostino Bonalumi. Recent Paintings, Sculptures and Drawings” opened at the New Vision Centre Gallery in London.
Arturo Schwarz began collecting his works and, in February 1965, organised a Bonalumi exhibition in his gallery in Milan.
He had strong links with the German art scene, thanks to the interest of Udo Kultermann in his work (since 1960) and his collaboration with the Galerie M.E. Thelen in Essen.
He also had assiduous contacts and links with the international Zero movement (both in the Netherlands and Germany), documented by major exhibitions such as “Zero” in London, 1964, and the touring exhibition “ZERO Avantgarde”, which began in Lucio Fontana’s studio in Milan in 1965. 1965 marked the start of a long period of collaboration with Renato Cardazzo, director of the Galleria del Cavallino in Venice and the Galleria del Naviglio in Milan. He was Bonalumi’s sole agent for many years and, in 1973, supervised the publication of a lengthy monograph on the artist by Edizioni del Naviglio, written by Gillo Dorfles.
In 1966 he was invited to take part in the 33rd Venice Biennale, where he exhibited a selection of his works in the same room as Paolo Scheggi, while in 1970 he had his own personal room at the 35th Venice Biennale (and a feature written on him in the catalogue by Luciano Caramel), in which he also installed some large environmental sculptures.
In 1967 he was invited to the São Paulo Biennial and the Biennial of Young Artists in Paris. This was followed by a period of study and work in northern Africa and America, where he lived for a while in New York. It was here that he held his first solo show in the United States: “Agostino Bonalumi. Painting–Constructions”, presented at the Galeria Bonino in 1967.
During this period, Bonalumi embarked on his own particular course of painting and environmental sculpture, which unfolded over the decades in some fundamental stages: in 1967, Blu abitabile (Inhabitable Blue) created for “Lo spazio dell’immagine” exhibition in Foligno (and exhibited again in 1970 in the “Vitalità del negativo” show in Rome); in 1968, Grande Nero (Big Black) at the Museum am Ostwall in Dortmund; in 1979, as part of the “Pittura Ambiente” exhibition curated by Francesca Alinovi and Renato Barilli in the Palazzo Reale in Milan, Dal giallo al bianco e dal bianco al giallo (From Yellow to White and from White to Yellow). More recently, Ambiente bianco – Spazio trattenuto e spazio invaso (White Environment – Detained Space and Invaded Space), created in 2002 for the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice as part of the “Temi e Variazioni” project conceived and curated by Luca Massimo Barbero.
In 1974, a retrospective of the artist’s work, curated by Giulio Carlo Argan, was held in the Palazzo dei Musei in Modena. In 1980, the Regione Lombardia sponsored an exhibition in the Palazzo Te, Mantua, curated by Flavio Caroli and Gillo Dorfles: an extensive review that illustrated his entire artistic career.
In 1981 he took part, together with Piero Dorazio, Mimmo Rotella and Giuseppe Santomaso, in the “Italian Art: Four Contemporary Directions” exhibition at the Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art in Florida. In 1986 he participated in the 11th Rome Quadriennale and the 42nd Venice Biennale. Between 1986 and 1997 Bonalumi was represented exclusively by the Galleria Blu in Milan, which presented solo shows of his work in 1980, 1989, 1991, 1995 (with a monograph published by Scheiwiller as part of the Arte Moderna Italiana series, including a piece written by Vanni Scheiwiller), 2002 and 2005. A monograph by Elena Pontiggia, which documented Bonalumi’s works on paper and made from paper, was also published in 1995, as part of La Scaletta editions, San Polo, Reggio Emilia.
In 1997 he began working with the Galleria Fumagalli in Bergamo, which, in 1998, held an exhibition of his works from 1957 to 1997, accompanied by a monograph by Alberto Fiz and Marco Meneguzzo.
In 1999 he was once again invited to the Rome Quadriennale and, in 2000, a solo exhibition of his opened in the Galleria Niccoli in Parma, which was accompanied by an important monograph by Luca Massimo Barbero.
In 2001 he took part in the “Materia/Niente” group show at the Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa in Venice and, in the same year, the Accademia Nazionale di San Luca presented him with the “Premio Presidente della Repubblica” 2001 for sculpture. To mark the occasion, a retrospective of the artist’s work was held in the rooms of the Accademia, accompanied by a monograph by Achille Perilli.
In November 2003, during the six-month Italian presidency of the EU Council, he took part in the “Futuro Italiano” exhibition in the rooms of the European Parliament in Brussels. Between 2003 and 2004, the Institut Mathildenhöhe in Darmstadt dedicated an anthology exhibition to him.
He had solo shows in 2008 in the Mazzoleni Galleria d’Arte, Turin, in 2010 in the Galerie Vedovi, Brussels, and in 2012 in the Barbara Mathes Gallery, New York. In 2011 the Museum of Modern Art in Moscow dedicated a retrospective to the artist, curated by Lea Mattarella.
In 2012 his work featured in the “Manzoni Azimut” exhibition in the Gagosian Gallery, London, devoted to the philological reconstruction of the international activities and context of the historic Milanese magazine and gallery, extensively documented in the book of the same name by Francesca Pola. In 2013, a solo show curated by Silvia Pegoraro was held at the Partners & Mucciaccia Gallery in Singapore. In the course of his career he has also completed some major projects for the stage: in 1970, he designed the scenery and costumes for the Partita ballet (score by Goffredo Petrassi, choreography by Susanna Egri) at the Teatro Romano in Verona, and in 1972 he created the scenery and costumes for Rot (score by Domenico Guaccero, choreography by Amedeo Amodio) at the Teatro dell'Opera in Rome. He also created artist's books for Edizioni Colophon, Belluno, featuring pieces written by himself and by Petrarca, Villa and Goethe. He published scherzo, io (twelve poems, Colophon, Belluno, 2000), Da te ascolto tornare le cose (with a comment by Concetto Pozzati, Book Editore, Castel Maggiore [Bologna], 2001), and Difficile cogliersi (Edizioni Il Bulino, Rome 2002). Agostino Bonalumi died in Monza on 18 September 2013. On 4 October 2013, Robilant + Voena Gallery in London presented the first retrospective specifically devoted to his work from the 1950s to the 1970s: “Agostino Bonalumi. All the Shapes of Space 1958–1976”, curated by Francesca Pola, who also wrote and edited the monograph published on this occasion, and realized a video documentary including Bonalumi’s last interview on his work.
John Havens Thornton
John Havens Thornton is an American artist, born in Mexico City in 1933. He lives and works with his wife - painter Pat Coomey Thornton - in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
Thornton first explored and analyzed abstraction, with fellowclassmate Frank Stella, under the guidance of William Seitz at Princeton University in the mid 1950s. Seitz, who later became the first person in 1955 awarded a PhD in modern art from Princeton University, wrote some of the earliest major texts on Abstract Expressionism and had strong influence on John Thornton's work. After his graduation in 1955, Thornton moved to New York and developed a mature approach to Abstract Expressionism, which led in 1961 to his first exhibition at the Nordness Gallery. The second phase of his career took place in Boston, where in 1963 he became professor of Art at the Massachusetts College of Art and taught studio art and the philosophy of art for the next 20 years. In Boston, Thornton's work took a sharp turn towards minimal and conceptual pictorial expression. While his forms grew linear and the references became figurative, the focus shifted on the structure, meanings and emotions associated to shapes and colors. Thornton has exhibited regularly since the early 1960's, notably at the ICA, Boston (1967) and the Museum of Fine Art, Boston (1970). In 1967 the curators of the Whitney Museum of American Art selected Thornton "Tree" series to be featured in the "Annual Exhibition of Contemporary American painting" - the exhibition that would later become the Whitney Biennale. John Thornton also exhibited at the Rose Art Museum, Waltham, MA (1979) ; De Cordova Museum, Lincoln, MA (1987) ; New Bedford Art Museum, MA (2004).
“From his first body of Paintings in the early 1960’s, John Thornton has considered and employed the formal aesthetic concerns of color, line, form, space, and surface. But, over the course of his career to the present day, he has sought equally to create abstract art in which the viewer can perceive something of the artists’s personality. It is this quality that has always attracted and held Thornton’s attention to certain artists’s work, and one he deems essential for his own. Initially this may sound like a difficult feat to pull off effectively, but consider the value of how much can be determined about someone when listening to how he or she talks. Syntax, word choice, use of pauses, vocal inflection, expression and body language - all of these attendant elements of speech - provide an attentive listener with information that can deepen the meaning and view point of the speaker’s words. Learning something of an artists’s personality from viewing art, especially from a mode of artistic expression that may be challenging, is a parallel experience.” David B. Boyce
Enrico Castellani (born August 4, 1930, Castelmassa), one of Italy's most influential artists, is an Italian 20th century painter associated with the zero movement, Movimento Arte Nucleare and Azimut. Castellani contributed the development of avant-garde art in Europe in the 1950s and 1960s. Castellani studied sculpture and painting at Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts in 1952 and architecture at École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Belgium (1956). He is best known for his "paintings of light" that merge art, space and architecture to transcend the confines of painting. In 1956 Castellani returned to Italy and met artists like Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni who were pushing Italian avant-garde art.
His original approach is considered fundamental for the art history of the 20th century, not only in Italy, but also on the international scene; In particular, Castellani influenced Donald Judd, who saw him as the father of minimalism.
Castellani has exhibited at the most renowned institutions in the world including the MoMA and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels and he has represented Italy at the Venice Biennale. He has had retrospective exhibitions at Pushkin Museum, Moscow, Russia; Kettle's Yard in Cambridge; the Miuccia Prada in Milan; The Modern and Contemporary Civic Gallery in Latina in Trento; and Palazzo Fabroni in Pistoia. Castellani was the 2010 recipient of the Praemium Imperiale for Painting, the first Italian artist ever to receive this honor.
In 1959, Castellani, Vincenzo Agnetti (1926–81), Agostino Bonalumi (1935-2013) and Piero Manzoni founded the Milan gallery Azimut and the affiliated journal “Azimuth,” organizing international exhibitions and publishing essays that opposed the dominant art movements in Europe at the time. They wanted to announce that, although they had been involved with the then prominent movements of Abstract Expressionism and Art Informel at the beginning, they were now in a different but still radical place. They discussed the beginnings and the decline of Art informel and put forward a new objective language with the presentation of works by Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Yves Klein, Lucio Fontana and others.
The Angolare (“Angular”) series consists of 12 painted works from 1960-1965 for which Castellani fabricated cornershaped armatures that impose concave and convex curvatures on the canvas, yielding subtly disorienting perceptual and spatial effects
Moving beyond the spatially suggestive quality of his Angolare series, Castellani produced his first environment in 1967. Called the Ambiente Bianco (“White Environment”), the work was a spatially enclosing structure formed by interlocking canvases of geometric and angled shapes. The work was destroyed following its exhibition. In 1970 Castellani reconstructed the environment, adding a floor and ceiling, and reintroduced it as Spazio Ambiente (“Environment Space”) in the landmark exhibition “Vitality of the Negative in Italian Art 1960/70” at Rome’s Palazzo delle Esposizioni. Spazio Ambiente is a 360-degree painting executed in a translucent white acrylic that produces a luminescent and transcendental optical effect. Castellani demonstrates the power of abstract painting to transform space and encompass the viewer. Together the Angolare works and Spazio Ambiente articulate Castellani’s determination to produce unprecedented and dynamic spatial experiences while using the traditional canvas.
Andy Warhol (1928 – 1987) was an American artist who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art. His works explore the relationship between artistic expression, celebrity culture and advertisement that flourished by the 1960s. After a successful career as a commercial illustrator, Warhol became a renowned and sometimes controversial artist. The Andy Warhol Museum in his native city, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, holds an extensive permanent collection of art and archives. It is the largest museum in the United States dedicated to a single artist.
Warhol's art encompassed many forms of media, including hand drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, silk screening, sculpture, film, and music. He was also a pioneer in computer-generated art using Amiga computers that were introduced in 1984, two years before his death. He founded Interview Magazine and was the author of numerous books, including The Philosophy of Andy Warhol and Popism: The Warhol Sixties. He managed and produced the Velvet Underground, a rock band which had a strong influence on the evolution of punk rock music. His studio, The Factory, was a famous gathering place that brought together distinguished intellectuals, drag queens, playwrights, Bohemian street people, Hollywood celebrities, and wealthy patrons.
“Business art is the step that comes after art. I started as a commercial artist, and I want to finish as a business artist. Being good in business is the most fascinating kind of art. During the hippie era people put down the idea of business. They’d say “money is bad” and “working is bad”. But making money is art, and working is art - and good business is the best art.” Andy Warhol.
Victor Ehikhamenor was born in Udomi-Uwessan, Edo State, Nigeria in 1970 and lives and works between Lagos, Nigeria and Maryland, USA. He is an award winning visual artist, writer and photographer. He draws influences from traditonal African motifs and religious cosmology. He has held numerous solo art exhibitions. His poetry collection, Sordid Rituals was published in 2002.
Since gaining his Bachelor of Arts in English and Literature from Ambrose Alli University, Nigeria, in 1991, he has been awarded two Masters degrees from the University of Maryland, USA, in Technology Management (2003) and an MFA (2008). He has received numerous awards for both his writing and art, as well as fellowships from organisations such as the Rockefeller Foundation (USA, 2016), the Nirox Foundation (South Africa, 2016) and the Norman Mailer Centre (USA, 2014)
In 2017, he was one of four artists chosen to exhibit as part of the first Nigerian Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale. His work has also been included in numerous group exhibitions and other biennales, including the 5th Mediations Biennale in Poznan, Poland (2016), the 12th Dak’art Biennale in Dakar, Senegal (2016), Biennale Jogja XIII, Indonesia (2015), as well as being shown at the 56th Venice Biennale as part of the German Pavilion (2015).
Ecuadorian photographer Pablo Guarderas was born in Quito in 1964, he lives and works in New York City, USA.
Guarderas views his own work as a means by which he may deconstruct and express his own personal beliefs and experiences. Each body of work is a testament to his perpetual search for truth and understanding. “I feel a connection with life's flow when I work that bring together feelings of completeness and silence. Most importantly I see what I have come to understand represented in it; I try to interfere as little as possible and go with the process as it reveals itself and as images begin to take shape. I spend most of my energy in the darkroom; it is there that alchemy happens, allowing me to become a vehicle rather than to be in control. Color is very important to me, it conveys immediate emotion bypassing the thought process and achieves these values I work with.”
Since his early exhibitions, Guarderas has been juxtaposing and contrasting aesthetic languages that shatter the surface of matter, drawing the viewer inward towards an alternative spiritual reality. In his recent body of work (photograms, analog photographic and mixed media works), the individual panes coalesce into a window offering a view of bodies in motion, the many facets of a universal truth projecting on our own inner landscape. Guarderas' beautifully stylized and vividly constructed images of female bodies question relations and boundaries between body and space, performance and photography, soul and consciousness.
Guarderas exhibited across America and Europe, and recently at Melet Mercantile Gallery, NYC; the Cuenca Biennial, Ecuador; and the Whitechapel Gallery, London. Pablo Guarderas' work has been acquired by the following collections: Victoria & Albert Museum, UK ; Citi Bank, UK ; Kodak Collection, UK ; Sisley Paris, France.
London-born Louise Thomas, currently living and working in Berlin, received her BA in Fine Art from the Falmouth School of Art in Cornwall in 2007, following a Diploma in Art Foundation from Kingston University, London in 2004. In addition to participating in Art Brussels with BISCHOFF/WEISS in 2009 and receiving the 2007 Ferdynand Zweig Scholarship, Thomas was shortlisted for the Celeste Painting Prize and 4 New Sensations, organised by the Saatchi Gallery and Channel 4, both in 2007.
Recent solo exhibitions include GTA Tru Life at Other Projects, Berlin and Artifice of Paradise at BISCHOFF/WEISS, London (2013), while recent group exhibitions include SHOT at Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, London (2013), The Dark Rooms at the Passmore Edwards Institute, Helston (2013), and One Can Often be Thwarted by Some Antidisestablishmentarianism at Primo Alonso, London (2009).
Thomas was Artist-in-Residence at NES in Skagstrond, Iceland, in 2010 and at the Florence Trust, St Saviours Church, London in 2009. Thomas has been a Visiting Guest Lecturer at Falmouth University and Artist Speaker at both The Royal Academy and Serpentine Gallery, London.
Sculptor Richard Hudson was born in 1954 in Yorkshire, England, he lives and works in Madrid.
Richard Hudson has a directly hands-on relationship with the materials he uses and in his approach to the organic form. This considerable skill makes him one of the few sculptors of his generation able to execute traditional sculpture within the world of contemporary visual arts. His work is, first and foremost, a persuasive argument to re-evaluate Western sculpture in the long tradition of creating beauty and, more specifically, in its substance. Beauty unfolds through a sensory adventure, giving the viewer a sense of balance and harmony. A hallowed sense which each culture has redefined in their own way over the course of history.
The co-existance and juxtaposition of the ancient and the modern are constant fundamentals in Richard Hudson’s work. The inherent attraction of the female form, that eternal symbol emulated throughout our cultural history, is interpreted in a broadly recognisable sense and also in its very core. Throughout the history of art, sculptors since the time of the Willendorf Venus (circa 22,000 BC) have moulded feminine curves in search of reflecting the essence of woman: of her fertility, power and beauty of form. Outside art historical associations, in the fields of psychology, anthropology and cultural studies, beauty can be seen to be born from a critical reflection on the significance of our very existence. The desire for beauty appears to be etched deeply into the human psyche.
Richard Hudson is a master in working directly with his materials. He expands sculptural practice in his skill and workmanship and in the subtle balance of his forms. His highly polished steel surfaces embrace and reflect their surroundings, while the enticing bronzes reach out to be caressed.
Hudson is a world away from those conceptual practioners who have no physical contact with their work and who constantly re-invent themselves. Richard Hudson has earned the name artist through long contemplation, the solitude of the studio, the painstaking work of creating by hand. His is a different rhythm, one achieved through a true relationship with his materials and the visual stimulus of the world around him.
“Whilst Brancusi, Arp or Moore inspire a great part of his sculptural work closer to the occidental tradition, the artist still allows space for the free interpretation of Duchamp’s or Warhol’s countersigns. Endowed with an incredible intuition and ability, sensual, ironic, unembarrassed..., surreal with a Dadaist touch and the heart of a great romantic, Richard Hudson has, with no doubt a large sculptural imagination.” – Pilar Ribal – Simo January 2004 , Art Critic
Richard Hudson has had a many exhibitions in galleries around the world, including: Beijing, China; Leeds, England; London, England; Dallas, Texas; Marbella, Spain; Valencia, Spain; and Mallorca, Spain. Recent exhibitions include: Monumental Sculptures Al Fresco at Great Fosters, UK (2011-2013); Beyond Limits, Sotheby's Chatsworth, UK (2008-2012); Estampa, Madrid, Spain; Esbaluard. Museo D, Art , Modern Contemporani de Palma Mallorca, Spain; Museum Palau de la Musica de Valencia, (Public Exhibition), Spain, (Solo).
Hudson’s wok is featured in the following colections: Tamara Mellon Collection; Manolo March Collection; SAS Prince Albert II of Monaco Collection; Gary Nader Collection; Christian Ringnes Collection; Lady Rothermere Collection; Espirito Santo Collection; Terry Fisher Collection; Dino Goulandris Collection; Tim Jefferies Collection; Sir Elton John Collection; Michael Douglas & Catherine Zeta Jones Collection; Esbaluard. Museum of Modern Art, Mallorca, Spain; Edward & Maryam Eisler Collection.
Takuji Hamanaka is an artist and printmaker living in Brooklyn, New York. He apprenticed in traditional woodcut printmaking at the Adachi Institute of Woodcut Prints in Tokyo Japan. There he learned the traditional Japanese technique for reproductions of old Japanese Ukiyo-e "pictures of the floating world" prints from artists such as Hiroshige. He then started to combine printmaking with collage, using extremely thin Japanese paper called Gampi. In his new series, Takuji Hamanaka has introduced a vibrant sense of light and color to his unique collages. Combined with his ongoing interests in restraint, pattern and perceived movement, Hamanaka continues to explore the possibilities of dimensionality in a flat surface.
His work has been exhibited at the International Print Center, New York; Whitman College, Washington; National Academy of Fine Arts, India; and the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh, Scotland, among others. Takuji Hamanaka has received a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, NY; KALA Art Institute Fellowship, CA and has been a resident at the MacDowell Colony, NH; Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, ME; and at Open Studios, Museum of Arts and Design, NY.
Matilda was born in Somerset, England in 1981, she lives and work in London.
After pursuing a career in tropical infectious diseases she came to photography in 2007. She is now based in the UK and divides her time between commissions and her personal work which is inspired by marginalised groups and societies. At times confrontational, her work is a empathetic nod to the self expression of her subjects and commands the immediate attention of the viewer. “My personal work is inspired by individuals who like to sit outside society’s norms and is as much about the viewer’s reaction as it is about the subjects” Temperley says.
In 2014 Matilda was a finalist for the SONY World Photo Awards for her African work. She was also a finalist in the CIWEM Environmental Photographer of the year awards for her work on the Somerset floods. Matilda's first book Under The Surface - Somerset Floods was published in 2014.
Matilda’s personal work has been shown extensively in the UK as well as in Paris, Brussels and Cape Town. Recent exhibitions include: The Environmental Photographer of the Year, RGS, London (2014); END PLATES, Somerset House, SONY World Photo Awards (2014); 'HUMAN ZOO: The London Series, The Wilmotte Gallery, London(2013); Current Ebony Gallery Franschoeck, South Africa (2013); ABYSSINIAN DREAMS, Michael Hoppen Gallery, London, UK; ABYSSINIAN DREAMS The Michael Hoppen Gallery, Paris.
Matilda is a regular contributor to international magazines and newspapers such as: Harpers Bazaar UK, Harpers Bazaar Art; Observer; The Guardian; The Telegraph; Sunday Times Magazine; The Times.