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    Sale 7706

    Post-War & Contemporary Art Day Sale

    12 February 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 153

    Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926)

    Sfera #7

    Price Realised  


    Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926)
    Sfera #7
    bronze with gold patina
    14¼in. (36cm.) diameter
    Executed in 1965, this work is from an edition of two plus one artist proof

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    This work is registered in the Archivio Arnaldo Pomodoro, Milan, under number AP 244.

    "I began to work on geometrical forms around 1960 (columns, spheres, wheels, cylinders, concave and convex planes, cubes, discs and pyramids), and that was a process of giving them a relationship to the 'writings' that were already an essential part of my work. Sometimes these scriptural 'glyphs' invaded and modified one or more surfaces. At other times, my modeling of interior forms would crystallize as autonomous forms that would thicken or break open. At still other times, the structures themselves, and the 'investigation' of the interiors of these forms would reveal deep pits and new internal formations as well as the fact of corrosion" (Pomodoro quoted in S. Hunter, Arnaldo Pomodoro, New York 1982, pp. 195-196).

    Dated 1965, Sfera # 7 is a superb example of Arnaldo Pomodoro's most celebrated series of Spheres. The work clearly reveals the sculptor's interest in the elementary forms of the geometric solids and their inner ferments: the gleaming, glossy, golden globe is split open to disclose an inside that appears to be filled with technological materials.

    This intricate surface pattern is a derivation of Paul Klee's 'graphitism' that Pomodoro turned into a three-dimensional kind of archaic 'writing' which seems to be an expression of an interior landscape. The artist's attempt to explore the links between the natural and the machine, the organic and the artificial led to the creation of sculptures that recall Sputnik satellites and computer banks as much as pure geometric forms, thus embracing both the timeless and the modern.

    The organic geometrical structure of Sfera # 7 "far from being simply a language of concluded forms, is something different, it is an uncertain, allusive construction where time and space are corroded from the inside" (A. C. Quintavalle, Arnaldo Pomodoro Catalogo Ragionato della Scultura, Milan 2007, p. 35).

    The lacerated surface of the sculpture, resulting from the violent gesture of the artist, disrupts the perfection of the sphere triggering the relationship between negative and positive forms whereas the mirroring effects of the sheen exterior allow the sculpture and its surrounding world to bleed into each other. Pomodoro established in his works an interaction of the process of constructing and destroying symbolizing the human anxieties and expectations towards the implications of the modern technological era. This exploration becomes both a continuation of the interest of his compatriot Spatialists and a fulfillment of a more incessant yearning of creating something new and unique.

    Special Notice

    Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.
    VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium


    Marlborough Galleria d'Arte, Rome.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1966.

    Pre-Lot Text



    Arnaldo Pomodoro, exh. cat., New York, Marlborough-Gerson Gallery, October-November 1965 (another from the edition exhibited).
    F. Gualdoni, Arnaldo Pomodoro Catalogo ragionato della scultura, vol. II, Milan 2007, no. 370 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 514).