Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more Property of a Roman Collector
Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926)

Sfera con perforazione

Arnaldo Pomodoro (b. 1926)
Sfera con perforazione
incised with the artist's signature, title, number and date ''SFERA CON PERFORAZIONE' 1966. Arnaldo Pomodoro, 02/p.a.' (on the base)
diameter: 23 5/8in (60cm.)
base: 2 x 23 3/8 x 23 3/8in. (5 x 59.5 x 59.5cm.)
overall:25 3/8 x 23 3/8 x 23 3/8in. (65 x 60 x 60cm.)
Executed in 1966, this work is the second artist's proof from an edition of two plus two artist's proofs
Marlborough Galleria dArte, Rome.
Acquired from the above by the present owner in March 1972.
P. W. J. Sten, 'De wereld van Novalis en die van Pomodoro', in Hervormd Nederland, 1969 (another from the edition illustrated).
F. Leonetti, 'Uno scultore come è: Arnaldo Pomodoro', in Bolaffiarte, Turin, May 1971 (another from the edition illustrated).
S. Hunter, Arnaldo Pomodoro, New York 1982, no. 69 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 76).
P. Zelanski and M. Fisher, Shaping Space, Fort Worth 1995 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 80).
Il Cigno Galileo Galilei (ed.), Arnaldo Pomodoro. 'Sphere within a Sphere' for the U.N. Headquarters, Rome 1997 (another from the edition illustrated, pp. 76-77).
F. Buzio Negri, 'Uno squarcio sul mistero', in La Prealpina, Varese, 24 December 1998 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 33). A. Pomodoro, Scritti critici per Arnaldo Pomodoro e opera dell'artista 1955-2000, Milan 2000 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 328).
F. Gualdoni, Arnaldo Pomodoro Catalogo ragionato della scultura, vol. I, Milan 2007 (another from the edition illustrated in colour, p. 121); vol. II, no. 389 (another from the edition illustrated, p. 522 and installation view illustrated, p. 343).
London, Marlborough Gallery, Arnaldo Pomodoro, 1968, no. 11 (another from the edition exhibited).
Cologne, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Arnaldo Pomodoro. Werke 1959-1969, 1969 (another from the edition exhibited).
Rotterdam, Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Arnaldo Pomodoro, 1969, no. 34 (another from the edition exhibited, illustrated, p. 26).
Zurich, Galerie Semiha Huber, Arnaldo Pomodoro, 1969 (another from the edition exhibited).
Berkeley, University Art Museum, Arnaldo Pomodoro: Sculpture 1960-1970, 1970-1971 (another from the edition exhibited). This exhibition later travelled to San Diego, Fine Arts Gallery of San Diego; Portland, Portland Art Museum; Austin, University of Texas, University Art Museum and Hartford, Wadsworth Atheneum.
Palermo, Palazzo Comitini, La Porta dei Re. Il progetto di Arnaldo Pomodoro per il portale del Duomo di Cefalù, 1998 (another from the edition exhibited).
Varese, Castello di Masnago, Arnaldo Pomorodo a Varese, 1998-1999 (another from the edition exhibited, illustrated, pp. 70-71).
Ischia, Torre Guevara, Arnaldo Pomorodo alla Torre Guevara di Ischia, 2003 (another from the edition exhibited, illustrated, p. 26).
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.

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Anne Elisabeth Spittler
Anne Elisabeth Spittler

Lot Essay

Created in 1966, Sfera con perforazione is an early example of Arnaldo Pomodoro's sculpted spheres. This was a group of works begun only three years earlier, yet had already gained international recognition, featuring in a number of exhibitions and even a documentary made by the filmmaker Giulio Cingoli. The previous year, Pomodoro had even appeared in Time Magazine, where he had explained that, 'For me, the sphere is a perfect, almost magical form. Then you try to break the surface, go inside and give life to the form' (Pomodoro, quoted in 'Sculpture: Dissatisfied Aristotle', Time Magazine, 3 December 1965, reproduced online at In Sfera con perforazione, it is clear that Pomodoro has succeeded in this: the innards of the sphere appear almost organic, as do the 'erosions' which seem to have cut away at the gleaming, mirror-like surface.
This work reveals the influence of - and riposte to - the legacy of Constantin Brancusi, whose works Pomodoro had seen in the Museum of Modern Art, New York, just over half a decade earlier. In Sfera con perforazione, the sheen and idealism of Brancusi's forms has been punctured, bringing out another quality through the various elements that are glimpsed in the interior. This is a type of substitute for writing or mark-making that resembles circuitry and that also allows Pomodoro to explore the nature of form through its presence and its absence: teeth bite into the void that has been seemingly etched out of this pristine globe.
In 1966, the year that Pomodoro created Sfera con perforazione, he was invited to be artist in residence at Stanford University. While there, he was exposed to the wonders of science and technology that were being pioneered. In some cases, these appeared to hint at the notion that Pomodoro's earlier works were a form of self-fulfilling prophecy. For instance, he was brought pieces of early IBM circuitry by some of the students which he realised resembled his own works (see S. Hunter, 'Monuments and Anti-monuments', pp. 57-77, F. Gualdoni (ed.), Arnaldo Pomodoro: Catalogo ragionato della sculptura, Vol. I, Milan, 2007, p. 73). His relationship with technology, especially in the nuclear age and against the backdrop of the Cold War, with the spectre of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) looming menacingly, brought about a shift in his relationship with these advances. 'I am fascinated by technology and machines, even though I do not know how to use them,' he explained. 'I was really overwhelmed by the laser reactor I first saw in action at Stanford University in 1966, because I realised that in the long run it is the scientists who have the power to discover the mysteries of life and matter. After that experience it took me a long time to get over a crisis regarding the meaning of my work' (Pomodoro, quoted in S. Hunter, 'Monuments and Anti-monuments', pp. 57-77, F. Gualdoni (ed.), Arnaldo Pomodoro: Catalogo ragionato della sculptura, Vol. I, Milan, 2007, p. 59).

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