66 x 132 x 22 cm
Collection Museum Haus Konstruktiv
Donated by Das Progressive Museum Basel
Parallelepido caduto [Parallelocaper collapsed]
Marcello Morandini (born 1940 in Mantua, Italia) is an important representative of Constructivist and Concrete Art who once said, “In geometry lies our freedom.” True to his motto, his art, which oscillates between art and design, is based on basic geometric forms. These exquisitely elegant works are often “spiced” with Op Art effects. Despite their logical austerity, his self-contained works unfold a fascinating and sometimes unsettling optical effect by integrating phenomena of visual perception into their designs. Box-like grids seem to extend into infinity, while parallel white lines appear to gravitate toward a black center. Geometric forms, including circles combined with lines, playfully overlap, while following a precise system.
After studying at the Accademia di Brera in Milan, Morandini began working in Milan as a graphic artist and designer at the end of the 1950s. He created his first purely artistic works in 1962 and his first sculptural works in 1964. He became internationally well known after exhibiting at the São Paolo Biennial and Venice Biennale (1967 and 1968 respectively), the documenta 6 (1977), and the Documenta Urbana (1982). Morandini then began creating numerous prize-winning designs (for the Rosenthal Studio, Sawaya & Moroni, Vorwerk, Brendel, and Magis, among others) in the 1970s. In the early 1980s, he began collaborating with international architectural firms like M. Miraglia, Varese, and Ong & Ong in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, developing designs for buildings and urban planning. As in his teaching (he has often taught design), Morandini investigates the transformation of rhythmical structures systematically, without the help of a computer. Despite the strict artistic rules he sets himself, he still manages to achieve a boundless diversity in his black and white surfaces, reliefs, and geometric bodies. His radical restriction of his works to the non-colors of black and white – or, in some design objects, to the palette used by De Stijl, namely red, green, blue, and yellow – testify as to the stylistic and intellectual roots of his artistic approach. As with Max Bill, this is based on uniting art with design and architecture. Using a well-considered artistic method that embraces all artistic fields, Morandini’s objective is to create a “functional sculpture” (in the spirit of Beuys’ “social sculpture”) in which people can live happily.
Dominique von Burg