1991 - 1993
110 x 110 x 3 cm
Acrylic on canvas
Collection Museum Haus Konstruktiv
Donated by the artist
Rot-Gelb-Blau, Variante A [Red-yellow-blue, variant A]
The Italian painter and sculptor Arturo Di Maria (born 1940 in Catania, Italy) immigrated to Switzerland after completing his training at the Academy of Fine Arts in Catania in 1974. Once in Zurich, he became inspired by Max Bill, Richard Paul Lohse, and Camille Graeser and began exploring Constructivist Art. He relativized the strict theories of these artists by integrating the scientific and theological philosophy of Teilhard de Chardin (1881–1955), in particular his book “Le Phénomène humain” from 1955, which he used as a basis for the development of his spatial approaches. As a co-founder of Gruppe X, whose members include Müller-Emil, Michael Baviera, Rudolf Hurni, and Ruth Senn, Di Maria took part in the exhibition “Konstruktiv 88” in the Kunsthaus Zürich and the Kunstmuseum Winterthur, and he continues to be represented in many museum and gallery exhibitions of Constructivist and Concrete Art.
In the 1980s, fascinated with the continuous oscillation of magnetic waves, the artist developed his approach of a continuous movement that extends into space. He designed precisely defined and dynamically interlaced color fields that alternate between shades of gray and anthracite in harmonic rhythms. He thus developed his own pictorial language that is characterized by the interaction between stasis and movement. He has applied the same concept in his sculptural works as well. Some sculptures consist of dynamic combinations of cubes, while others are made of identical elements of long, skinny square aluminum or wooden bars connected on the edges and aligned in rows. These elements are always slightly tilted at their axis, with their serial arrangement creating wavy or fan-shaped objects that have been painted or spray-painted white and are animated by light and shadow. In his newer works, the number of bars has been reduced to only two.
The works from Di Maria’s series “Spazio Indeterminato,” which he began making in 2009, are the result of his research into the laws of optics. By using the strictest reduction of pictorial elements, he gives the beholders the impression that the vertical or horizontal bars separating the color fields are animated. Here, his aim is to visualize undefined, poetic spaces whose harmony is based on the interaction between planes, lines, and colors. In this way, the artist expands the perceptual possibilities available to beholders and proves that, despite its many years, the development of Constructivist and Concrete Art is far from over.
Dominique von Burg