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Paolo Scheggi (1940-1971)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more
Paolo Scheggi (1940-1971)

Intersuperficie curva bianca

Paolo Scheggi (1940-1971)
Intersuperficie curva bianca
signed, titled and dated 'paolo scheggi intersuperficie curva bianca 1967' (on the reverse)
white acrylic on three superimposed canvases
55 1/8 x 55 1/8in. (140 x 140cm.)
Executed in 1967
Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner in 1969.
L. Trucchi, ‘Un’ambigua mescolanza. La quinta biennale di Parigi riservata ai giovani artisti’, in L’Europa. Settimanale di politica, economia, cultura, no. 6, 20-27 October 1967 (illustrated, p. 45).
Made In. Bollettino della Modern Art Agency, exh. cat., Naples, Modern Art Agency, 1969 (incorrectly dated, illustrated, unpaged).
Paris, Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Biennale de Paris. Section Italienne, 1967 (illustrated, unpaged).
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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Annemijn van Grimbergen
Annemijn van Grimbergen

Lot Essay

Across a vast, monochromatic plane modular repetitions of perfectly circular openings reveal the contours of numerous superimposed canvases in Paolo Scheggi’s Intersuperfcie curva bianca. With their sculptural surfaces and simple geometry, Scheggi’s Intersuperfci reveal a reciprocal relationship between each canvas. The three-dimensional echoes of shapes and reliefs within each cavity construct a concrete reality that defies the illusionistic parameters of traditional easel painting. Executed in 1967, Intersuperfcie curva bianca was created at the height of the artist’s tragically brief career following his move from Tuscany to Rome in 1961. Together with Agostino Bonalumi and Enrico Castellani, the Italian art critic Gillo Dorfes acknowledged Scheggi as an important exponent of the ‘Pittura Oggetto’, a movement that Dorfes perceived as going beyond figurative and abstract conceptions in order to embrace and expand the notion of artwork as object. Inspired by Lucio Fontana’s revolutionary slashed canvas and spatial objectives, Scheggi and his contemporaries aimed to challenge the dynamics of perception with their optically complex works.

In Intersuperfcie curva bianca the multiple layers of stacked canvases create a very real sense of depth, a vivid contrast to the illusionistic sense of space invoked by the figurative painting that had underpinned so much of Italian art over the past centuries. Existing somewhere between sculpture and painting, with its uniform white colour and pristine surface there are no distractions within this architectural work. In this way, Scheggi demonstrates an intellectual and aesthetic rigour that recalls the Achromes of his contemporary, Piero Manzoni. At the same time, this ideological approach is playfully disrupted by the way in which the exposed layers jostle together in an engaging counterpoint. The intricate play of light between each surface creates depth inducing shadows and partial eclipses within each ellipse, producing a complex calligraphy that writes itself in shadows across the bold pattern of progressing apertures, adding a dynamism to the canvas that belies its status as a monochrome. A riposte to the immaterial concerns of Yves Klein, the master of monochrome in Europe during the early 1960s, Scheggi’s bold canvases have an authentic depth that illustrates a total engagement with the material.

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