Andrea De Simeis, a un passo dall’Oriente


Andrea De Simeis, membro fondatore del gruppo Cubia è un artigiano eclettico con una forte passione per la Calcografia e la Carta maturata nel percorso universitario presso l’Accademia di Belle Arti di Lecce. Presso lo stesso istituto consegue il Diploma di Laurea nel 2005 e la Laurea Magistrale nell’anno 2008.

Itinerario Culturale e Professionale:

2002-03
Partecipa a “La stanza del suono” corso monografico per la IV Edizione di Lezioni Aperte. Performance del musicista Glauco Leo: otto osservazioni musicali e voce recitante. Rassegna grafica incisa – Chiostro dell’Accademia – 50 studenti per 100 opere.

Partecipa a “Del disegno e dell’ illustrazione”, Organizzazione a cura del convegno residenziale e workshop presso l’Accademia di Belle Arti di Lecce, per la cura del professore Glauco Lendaro.

2003-04
“La Comunicazione Visiva: l’Arte di Generare Visioni” – Partecipa alla tavola rotonda in collaborazione con l’Accademia dell’Illustrazione e della Comunicazione Visiva di Roma, l’Associazione Raggio Verde e l’ Accademia di Belle Arti Lecce, a cura del professore Glauco Lendaro e del maestro Giancarlo Montelli..

Per conto dell’Accademia di Belle Arti di Lecce realizza, in accordo con l’editore Piero Manni di Lecce e le Poste Italiane S.p.a., una cartolina istituzionale dedicata alla I Giornata dell’Arte e della Creatività; evento commemorativo per l’Annullo Speciale realizzato dal professore Glauco Lendaro.

“Disegno filatelico”; dona contributo grafico alla rassegna espositiva di 400 incisioni del corso di Tecniche dell’ Incisione, Prima Cattedra dell’Accademia di Belle Arti di Lecce per il fondo del museo permanente della Microincisione e prima sezione del Gabinetto dei Disegni e delle Stampe.

Partecipa a “Comunicare un’idea con un segno”; Workshop a cura di Giancarlo Montelli.

Espone alla collettiva: “Galatina in fiore”, ex convento di S.Chiara l’opera “Come il mare”(olio su tela; 100 x 162 cm), patrocinio dell’Associazione Pro Loco di Galatina, Unpli.

Espone l’opera grafica “Notte in Valpurga” in concorso presso il Museo Nazionale degli Strumenti Musicali – Roma; per il “Premio Nazionale delle Arti 2004″ organizzato dal Dipartimento per l’Università, l’Alta formazione artistica, musicale e coreutica e per la ricerca scientifica e tecnologica.

2004/05
Svolge l’attività di cultore della materia presso l’Accademia di Belle arti di Lecce per gli alunni della Prima Cattedra di Tecniche dell’Incisione e per conto del professor Glauco Lendaro.

Discute il diploma di Laurea con l’opera corrispondenziale “Ecce Homo, Timire Temone Mundi”, svolta con il professore Glauco Lendaro, il maestro Michele Provenzano, e il professore Franco Contini.

Partecipa al 4° Premio internazionale – “Biennale dell’incisione ; città di Monsummano terme” presso i locali del Museo di Arte contemporanea e del Novecento in Villa Renatico. Espone e dona al fondo museale l’opera grafica “Passio Christi nel millennio delle conquiste” – In rassegna: Mostra Omaggio a Kollwitz e Loffredo.

Per l’XI edizione del “Concorso letterario G.Perrone”, promosso dalla Regione Puglia, Provincia di Lecce, Comune di San Donato, Università degli Studi di Lecce, I Presìdi del Libro, realizza con la Prima Cattedra di Tecniche dell’Incisione i “Salvacoperte impraticabili”.

2006
Per “Prima Parete”, rassegna commemorativa dell’ottantesimo anniversario della Confindustria, per la cura di Toti Carpentieri e Antonio Basile, partecipa alla collettiva di artisti svolta nei medesimi locali, esponendo le opere “Coucoupietre” (bitume su tela), e il video PE’A, cortometraggio realizzato con la collaborazione di Francesca Elvira Nuzzo.

2007
Disegna e realizza per “Caroll”, lungometraggio di Valentino Curlante, prodotto da Zero Project, le maschere dei personaggi dell’omonimo racconto e illustra con l’opera grafica “Satiri”, la copertina del diario/tesi di produzione.

2008
Partecipa alle lezioni aperte di Franco Mariani per LaboratoriLiberi: “La carta nobile figlia di poveri stracci. Dalle origini alle rivoluzioni industriali”.

2009
Partecipa alla IX Edizione del Premio Acqui per la Biennale Internazionale dell’Incisione. Espone e dona al fondo museale l’opera grafica “Saladino” (opera selezionata per la mostra “en plein air” dalla Giuria di Accettazione della IX Edizione del Premio Acqui Incisione).

Consegue l’attestato di frequenza al “Corso di introduzione alle tecniche del Restauro della Carta e del Libro” presso Palazzo Spinelli, Firenze; docenti: Antonella Brogi, Maurizio Copedè; Roberto Bartolini.

Riceve la Special mention per l’acquaforte “la morte del Dio Tammuz” per il Concorso internazionale Exlibristico Sezione Ex Libris inediti “ Il dio TAMMUZ” patrocinato dall’ Associazione Solstizio d’Estate Bosia – (CN)

Personale itinerante de “La Battaglia ai corni di Hattin”; raccolta di incisioni su carta prodotta a mano con tecniche medievali e pitture a bitume giudaico su tela. Iniziativa curata da Francesca Elvira Nuzzo (presso: Castello Medioevale – Acquarica del Capo; Palazzo ducale – Presicce; Palazzo Gallone – Tricase)

Partecipa alla Quinta Edizione del Festival d’Arte Internazionale Songzhuang di BeiJing (Pechino – Cina) proposta dal Centro Culturale Cinese Fucina. Espone l’opera pittorica “Turcopolo in carica” (bitume giudaico su tela).

2010
Partecipa al 5° Concorso Internazionale Exlibristico ‘Biblioteca di Bodio Lomnago’ con l’opera incisa all’acquaforte “‘Astragogia’ ; racconto celeste per la biblioteca di Bodio Lomnago ’09″.

Disegna e realizza per le Cantine Duca Carlo Guarini una tiratura esclusivissima di 100 sovraetichette incise all’acquaforte e con stampa a caratteri mobili, per inaugurare il primo biologico dell’azienda: ‘Nativo 2008′. L’opera, completa della sua bottiglia, è presentata al pubblico per la prima volta in occasione del Vinitaly di Verona (8/12 aprile 2012) e per l’iniziativa Cantine Aperte (30 Maggio 2010).
In esposizione presso il Pad. 10 Puglia, Stand C5 (Vinitaly – Verona) l’opera incisa “Otranto”; acquaforte a rilievo su carta al fico comune del mosaico pavimentale della Cattedrale di Otranto.

Organizza ed espone l’ opera monografica “La Battaglia ai corni di Hattin”; raccolta di incisioni su carta prodotta a mano, colorata e acquerellata al vino nelle Tenute Duca Carlo Guarini in occasione dell’iniziativa Cantine Aperte, 30 Maggio 2010.

Realizza, con la collaborazione di Stefano Petrucci e Silvia Ruggeri, una tiratura esclusivissima di 50 taccuini mediterranei: compendio scritto del progetto editoriale “Comunicare Mediterraneo” di Stefano Petrucci e interventi grafici di Silvia Ruggeri, su carte prodotte a mano con fibre naturali e colori naturali. Il primo legato cartaceo è presentato al pubblico in occasione di “Sm-Art Made in Puglia. Il mondo delle piccole cose” – Galleria Red 03, Barcelona (28 Maggio – 10 Giugno 2010); un progetto di Esaltamente, con la direzione artistica di Carla Pinto, la direzione esecutiva di Valentina D’Andrea, realizzato in collaborazione con l’Apt di Lecce e con il patrocinio dell’Assessorato al Mediterraneo, Pace, Attività Culturali della Regione Puglia, Camera di commercio di Lecce, Provincia di Lecce, Comune di Lecce, Comune di Otranto, Assoartisti Lecce, Istituto Italiano di Cultura Barcellona.

2011
Premio Giovani per la X Biennale internazionale di incisione, la manifestazione, organizzata dall’Associazione Biennale Internazionale per l’incisione e patrocinata dal Rotary Club Acqui Terme, dalla Regione Piemonte, dalla Provincia di Alessandria, dal Comune di Acqui Terme, dalla Fondazione C.R.T., dal Governatore Rotary Club International Distretto 2030. Dona al fondo museale, Castello dei Paleologi di Acqui, l’esclusivissima tiratura di 75 esemplari e la matrice biffata dell’opera Cavaliere Rampante (rame 400 x 400 mm su carta di ficus carica 650 x 500 mm).

Compare sulla Copertina de’ Comunicare Mediterraneo, appunti per un nuovo Rinascimento pensato al Sud; autore Stefano Petrucci per Fausto Lupetti Editore.

Pertecipa alla XVII edizione de Libri mai visti, 2011, concorso e mostra per libri manufatti a cura dell’Associazione culturale VACA e del Comune di Russi, con il legato cartaceo ‘Taccuino Mediterraneo’.

2012
Edita Le Manuel Pratique de la fabrication du papier; scartafascio di preziosissimi fogli di moracee vergati a mano sulla curiosa storia della manifattura cartaria orientale del VII secolo. Traduzione dal francese Ilenia Reale; carte e incisioni Andrea De Simeis. Stampa tipografica Hidelberg in Bodoni. 30 esemplari.

Dona al gruppo Magma Jewels fogli di fibra vegetale di fico comune per l’esclusiva realizzazione della collezione di gioielli Anemos.

Espone l’opera Molto mi piace la lieta stagione di primavera (xilografia e stampa caratteri tipografici) presso la Fondazione Banca del Monte Domenico Siniscalco Ceci, Foggia. Esibizione della collezione privata del Professore Luigi Paglia di libri di artista italiani del Novecento, rassegna dal titolo La scrittura e l’Immagine a cura di Luigi Paglia.

Espone otto incisioni del ciclo La Battaglia ai Corni di Hattin nella mostra de’ Le Visioni di Merìca: evento espositivo di Andrea De Simeis e Norman Mommens per la cura di Ada Martella nella rassegna estiva del Cinema del Reale, Palazzo Risolo Specchia.

fonte: http://www.cubiarte.it/_andrea_de_simeis.html

in questo video, una piccola chiacchierata con Andrea, ci accompagna nella suggestione di una ricerca che ha il sapore caldo della terra di “mezzo” mediterraneo sentire di contaminazione orientale. Andrea abita in quella parte di Italia che meglio di altre sente il vento e i suoni di Turchia, di Marocco, di terre di crociate e pirati…il Salento. Andrea racconta la sua sabbia, nella carta che realizza artigianalmente, dalla polpa del fico, albero mite ma coraggioso che abita insieme a lui la Terra d’Otranto…e al fico Andrea si stringe in un patto di solidale collaborazione…prende in prestito la sua carne che abilmente trasforma in fogli di carta, sui quali danzano gli inchiostri provenienti dalla Turchia, attraverso il sale del Mediterraneo, riporta fedelmente i volti disfatti e stanchi di cavalieri erranti, di processioni grottesche attraverso il deserto, per giungere in terra Santa…e da quei luoghi torna in Terra di Salento per tracciare su incisioni sottili e profonde quasi scavate nella pelle, i racconti di un passato eroico, misero, doloroso, sorridente, popolare e regale, giullari e abitanti della terra arsa dal sole, si danno il cambio in un teatro di paradossale messa in scena..

Andrea De Simeis è su http://www.cubiarte.it

Lucio Fontana


Fontana nacque a Rosario, in Argentina, il 19 febbraio 1899 da genitori italiani. La sua attività artistica inizia nel 1921 lavorando nell’officina di scultura del padre Luigi Fontana e, del collega e amico del padre, il molinellese Giovanni Scarabelli. Diventa poi seguace di Adolfo Wildt. Sin dal 1949, infrangendo la tela con buchi e tagli, egli superò la distinzione tradizionale tra pittura e scultura. Lo spazio cessò di essere oggetto di rappresentazione secondo le regole convenzionali della prospettiva. La superficie stessa della tela, interrompendosi in rilievi e rientranze, entrò in rapporto diretto con lo spazio e la luce reali.
Le sue tele monocrome, spesso dipinte a spruzzo, portano impresso il segno dei gesti precisi, sicuri dell’artista che, lasciati i pennelli, maneggia lame di rasoio, coltelli e seghe. Tutto è giocato sulle ombre con cui, specie la luce radente, sottolinea le soluzioni di continuità.

Visse in Argentina fino a sei anni e vi tornò durante la seconda guerra mondiale, Fontana giunse alla sua poetica meditando la lezione del barocco, in cui, come egli scrisse le figure pare abbandonino il piano e continuino nello spazio. Del movimento spazialista egli fu il fondatore e il più noto rappresentante, presto affermato anche sul piano internazionale.
Come gesti apertamente provocatori vanno intese certe sue tele monocrome che, quali i buchi ed i tagli, scandalizzarono il pubblico anche per la facilità con cui è possibile rifarle[1]. Numerosi furono infatti i falsari, ma pochi con un segno altrettanto sicuro. Fontana, per cautelarsi, scrisse sul retro di ogni tela frasi insensate, semplice appiglio per una perizia calligrafica.
La moglie Teresita Rasini, nel 1982, ha dato vita alla Fondazione Lucio Fontana. Il 12 aprile 2008 nella sala d’asta di Christie’s a Londra l’opera dell’autore “Concetto spaziale, Attesa”, stimata tra i 3,5 e i 5,5 milioni di sterline, è stata aggiudicata nell’asta Post-War and Contemporary Art a 6.740.500 sterline, pari a 9.018.789 euro.

Edouard Manet


Édouard Manet (Parigi, 23 gennaio 1832 – Parigi, 30 aprile 1883) è stato un pittore francese.
Egli stesso non ha mai voluto essere identificato col gruppo degli impressionisti, né partecipò mai alle loro esposizioni. Questo perché, per tutta la vita, preferì avere un riconoscimento ufficiale davanti allo Stato mediante l’ammissione al Salon, e non attraverso sotterfugi, come lui stesso affermò. Egli infatti manifestò una decisa posizione in difesa del principio della libertà espressiva dell’artista, con opere che suscitarono scandalo presso i suoi contemporanei, come Colazione sull’erba e Olympia. A partire dal 1869 si dedicò alla pittura en plein air (“all’aperto”) e le sue uscite ai giardini delle Tuileries, sul retro del Louvre, divennero quasi degli appuntamenti mondani. La sua attività di pittura continuò fino al 1883, con l’arrivo della sua morte. Il pittore ottenne una grandissima fama e tutt’oggi rimane il più grande interprete della pittura pre-impressionista.Édouard Manet nacque a Parigi nel 1832 in una famiglia ricca e influente. Il padre, Auguste Manet, era un giudice che avrebbe voluto che Édouard intraprendesse la sua stessa carriera. Il giovane presto espresse il desiderio di entrare alla prestigiosa École des Beaux-Arts, ma come risposta, il genitore lo fece imbarcare su una nave. Il viaggio, che durò più di un anno, fortificò ancor di più le aspirazioni di Manet, che al ritorno ottenne finalmente il permesso di studiare arte presso il celebre pittore Thomas Couture. Lo stile accademico e banalissimo di Couture, però, mal si sarebbe adattato all’indole del giovane Manet, che lasciò il suo maestro polemicamente, dopo sei anni. Passato all’Accademie, ebbe modo di seguire le lezioni del celebre Léon Bonnat, e di lì a poco conobbe i suoi futuri compagni impressionisti (Monet, Sisley, Cézanne, Pissarro) e dei letterati.

Olympia (1863) Musée d’Orsay
Viaggiò in Germania, Italia, Spagna e Olanda dove conobbe le opere di Frans Hals, Diego Velázquez e Francisco Goya.
Divenne amico degli impressionisti Edgar Degas, Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Alfred Sisley, Paul Cézanne e Camille Pissarro, attraverso la pittrice Berthe Morisot, che introdusse l’artista nel gruppo. La Morisot convinse Manet a dedicarsi alla pittura en-plein-air, conosciuta grazie a Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot: fu anche fonte di ispirazione per alcuni spunti tecnici che l’artista introdusse nelle proprie opere. Nel 1863 Édouard sposò Suzanne Leenhoff. Nel 1881, su suggerimento di Antonin Proust, amico dell’artista, il governo francese insignì Manet della Legion d’onore.
Manet morì per sifilide e reumatismi non curati, contratti a quarant’anni (o, secondo alcuni, addirittura in gioventù, quando era imbarcato sulla nave). La malattia gli causò forti dolori e una parziale paralisi negli ultimi anni di vita. Il 6 aprile 1883, dopo un estenuante tira-e-molla, gli venne amputato il piede sinistro, ma l’operazione non servì a risparmiarlo dalla morte, che sopraggiunse quasi un mese dopo, il 30 aprile 1883, dopo un’interminabile agonia sfociata nel coma.
Le sue ultime parole prima di perdere conoscenza e sprofondare nel coma, furono di rimpianto per l’ostilità del suo avversario Alexandre Cabanel: “Sta bene, quello!”. Venne sepolto nel Cimitero di Passy, ed accanto a lui, anni dopo, saranno sepolti sia il fratello Eugène che Berthe Morisot.
Nonostante l’amico dottor Gachet gli avesse sconsigliato di farlo, Manet si fece amputare la gamba in casa, per la precisione sul grande tavolo del salotto, dopo esser stato cloroformizzato. I medici, andandosene, lasciarono l’arto amputato dietro il paravento del caminetto, dove Leon Koella, volendo accenderlo, lo trovò. [senza fonte]
Nonostante la reciproca complicità, era celebre l’antipatia personale che Manet provava per Cézanne, il quale, a sua volta, lo ricambiava con altrettanta scortesia. È divenuta celebre la frase con cui quest’ultimo una volta lo salutò: “Non le stringo la mano, monsieur Manet, perché è una settimana che non la lavo”.[1]
Manet ebbe fama di donnaiolo, e tra le sue conquiste va annoverata Marie-Pauline Laurent (che fu poi musa di Stéphane Mallarmé). La stessa Berthe Morisot si era invano innamorata di lui, al punto tale di sposarne il fratello Eugéne pur di stargli vicino, e dando luogo a furibonde scene di gelosia, in particolar modo quando Manet prese come allieva l’avvenente Eva Gonzalez.[senza fonte]. Arrivò addirittura al punto, nel 1877, di sedurre la giovane moglie di un suo lanciatissimo allievo e amico, Jules Armand Hanriot che, per il dolore, sparì dalla scena artistica e da Parigi, tanto che molte biografie riportano la sua morte nella stessa data, a 24 anni, anche se Henriot sarebbe morto solo nel 1921 (ma altri sostengono che sia stato Hanriot a sedurre madame Manet, da cui la furia di Edouard e la “fuga” dell’allievo dalle sue ire).
Pur se legato a lui da reciproca amicizia, provava inizialmente molto disturbo per la sua quasi omonimia con Monet, che era motivo di equivoci per il pubblico.

fonte: wikipedia.

The Third & The Seventh….by Alex Roman


Fullscreen it, please.

A FULL-CG animated piece that tries to illustrate architecture art across a photographic point of view where main subjects
are already-built spaces. Sometimes in an abstract way. Sometimes surreal.

Credits:

CG

|Modelling – Texturing – Illumination – Rendering| Alex Roman

POST

|Postproduction & Editing| Alex Roman

MUSIC

Sequenced, Orchestrated & Mixed by Alex Roman (Sonar & EWQLSO Gold Pro XP)

Sound Design by Alex Roman

Based on original scores by:

.Michael Laurence Edward Nyman. (The Departure)
.Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns. (Le Carnaval des animaux)

Directed by Alex Roman

Done with 3dsmax, Vray, AfterEffects and Premiere.

The Third & The Seventh from Alex Roman on Vimeo.

Jarosław Kubicki


 

He designed numerous covers of music albums of such music groups as Closterkeller, Moonlight, Agonised by Love, Artrosis. In 2005, in cooperation with Bartosz Hervy, Kubicki crated Rumours About Angels project. In addition to this, the artist participated in the following artistic undertakings: comadivision, designmadeinpoland or eastern frontline. He is a graphics designer of several websites. Winner of the prestigious awards in the field of internet creation: American Design Award or Favourite Webside Award

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Maurits Cornelis (M.C.) Escher



    • M.C. Escher and two friends left Arnhem for Italy in April of 1922. On his leaving, his mother had these words of parting for her artistic son: “Son, don’t smoke too much.” The two friends returned to Holland after only a couple of weeks in Florence, and Escher went on to San Gimignano with a sister of one of them. He did a great deal of serious drawing here and in the next few towns he visited: Volterra and Siena. He spent all of the spring of 1922 roaming the Italian countryside, drawing landscapes, plants, and even insects. In Assissi he met a fellow Dutchman, the painter Gerretsen. The two met occassionally over the next few years. 

      Returning home in June, Escher found that he could not be happy and productive in his old environs. He seized his first opportunity to return to southern europe, taking a freighter to Spain with some friends, and saving expenses by caring for their two small children on the trip. It was on this trip that he first saw the phenomenon of a phosphorescent sea, so beautifully expressed later in his woodcut of the same name. In Spain, he saw his first bullfight: an “off-putting and barbaric” event. He visited Madrid and its famous museum, the Prado, but was unimpressed by many of the paintings there. Surprisingly, he also attended another bullfight. He dodged large rats to find a place to draw in Toledo. Missing an express train, he spent 24 hours on a local train to get to Granada. In Granada, Escher visited the Alhambra, and saw examples of Moorish (Arabic) decorative styles. He studied these, and copied one.

      Escher travelled from Spain to Italy by ship, and enjoyed the voyage immensely, splitting his time between drawing the ship and playing cards with her officers. After travelling around Italy, he settled in Siena for several months. During this time he worked very hard and enjoyed himself immensely, calling the town and atmosphere “blessed.”

      March of 1923 found Escher still working hard and traveling around Italy. At the end of the month, a Swiss family took up residence at the pension where Escher was staying. Over the next few months, Escher found himself drawn to the daughter of the family, Jetta Umiker. Letters to his friend Jan state that he found her arms especially attractive. In a more serious vein, Escher realized he was falling in love with Jetta Umiker, but was uncertain of his own ability to maintain a relationship. When the Umiker’s left for Switzerland in June, Escher expressed his feelings at the last moment, and a bond was formed.

      Escher traveled around Italy some more, and in August of 1923 held his first one-man show in Siena. He paid very little attention to this important milestone in his artistic career, he was concentrating on Jetta. In mid-August he proposed to her, and on August 28 arrived in Zurich to formally meet the family. They decided to marry and live in Italy.

      1924 was a very busy year for M.C. Escher. He held his first one-man show in his native Holland in February. On June 12, he married Jetta in Viareggio, Italy. The newlyweds visited Genoa, Annecy, and Brussels. In October they went to France, and then went back to Italy. During all these travels, Escher had the chance to observe a great many architectural forms. At the end of 1924, Escher and his new bride purchased a house under construction in Frascati, a small town outside of Rome. The house was finished in March, 1925, but the couple did not move in until October.

      Shortly after Escher moved into his new home outside of Rome, his brother was killed in a mountaineering accident, and Escher had to go to the site to identify the body. After this tragedy, Escher produced his famous Days of Creation woodcuts.

      In June of 1926, the Eschers bought a new, larger house under construction in anticipation of an addition to their family. In late July, George Escher was born. It is a measure of Escher’s growing fame that both King Emmanuel and Mussolini attended the boy’s christening.

      Living in Rome, happy with his wife and child, the late 1920s were a productive period for Escher. He exhibited works in many shows in Holland, and by 1929 was so popular that he was able to hold five shows in Holland and Switzerland that year. It was during this period that his pictures were first labeled as mechanical and “reasoned.” Pictures from this period include some of Escher’s most striking landscapes, and also some stark commercial illustrations. The very famous lithographic of a mountainside village, Castrovalva, was completed in February 1930. Also, Escher’s son Arthur was born in 1930.

      Later in 1930, and into 1931, Escher health was poor and there was a lull in the sale of prints. These lulls occured periodically through the artist’s life, this time it was broken by a meeting with the Director of the Dutch Historical Institute in Rome. G.J. Hoogewerff suggested some new works, and also wrote an article in a magazine about Escher’s work. The works he suggested were published as a book, Emblemata, in 1932.

      The printroom of Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam bought twenty-six prints to give Escher a nice start to 1933. In May, he went to Corsica and made nineteen drawings that later became wood engravings and lithographs. Later that year, he created some prints for a horror book named The Terrible Adventures of Scholastica.

      In 1934, Escher and his family went to the seashore, and then Escher and his wife continued on to Belgium, Ghent, and Bruges. In the meantime, his work was doing well in the US. His printNonza won third prize at the Exhibition of Contemporary Prints at the Art Institute of Chicago. The Art Institute also purchased the print, which was Escher’s first sale to a museum in America

      Due to business in Holland, Escher traveled to his parent’s house at The Hague in the summer of 1935. He then travelled to Amsterdam. During this visit, Escher spent a great deal of time on a detailed portrait of his father. This lithograph was finished in August, and prints given to members of the family only. 

      In August of 1935, Escher and his family moved into a new home in Chateau-d’Oex, Switzerland. Life was expensive, and Jetta missed the social life of Italy. Escher worked hard, and finished several woodcuts and a lithograph.

      As autumn passed into winter, the Escher family grew accustomed to their new home. Jetta took up piano again, and Escher himself joined the local chess club. The children enjoyed the snow. In December, Escher made a lithograph of a farmer’s shed on a snow-covered hillside, but was disappointed with the poverty and starkness of the result. His son George later said that his father missed the warmth of Italian landscapes.

      In early 1936, Escher was determined to take a trip back through southern Europe. He wrote a shipping company, and offered to make prints of the company’s ships and their ports of call, in exchange for free passage on the company vessels. To his surprise, the Adria shipping company accepted the offer, and at the end of April he left for Trieste. At the Adria offices, he was treated with great deference and courtesy.

      Escher’s journey by ship took him to Venice, Ancona, Bari, Catania, Palermo, Genoa, and several other Italian and Sicilian cities. Jetta joined him in mid-May. During the trip, Escher made many sketches of the ships and ports. Roughly nine prints, almost all woodcuts, resulted from the trip. It was to be Escher’s last extended trip through his beloved Mediterranean Italy.

      In June, after his trip courtesy of Adria, Escher and his wife visited some lakes in Switzerland, and then went to stay with Escher’s parents at the Hague. The trip was successful, but it was a successful ending to one phase of Escher’s career. On September 1, Escher and his family returned to Chateau d’Oex, and Escher’s graphic work gradually began to take new directions.

        • Also during the early 1950se, Escher gained popularity as a lecturer. He was in demand both for artistic audiences, and for scientific ones. He also held his first one-man exhibition in the United States. It was held in Washington, and raised US awareness of Escher’s work and sold many prints. Due to the rush of work, Escher completed only two new works in 1954. 

          April 27, 1955, was an exciting but morally conflicting day for M.C. Escher. It began normally, with him working on a woodcut in his studio. By the end of the day, he was a Knight! He described it as follows to his son Arthur. This letter captures very well the tone of his personal correspondence during this period, and also his aversion to the trapping of celebrity.

          Three days ago the town clerk announced Alderman Ros was coming to visit me the following morning. In view of the warm weather and my being very busy, I had not dressed up in anything special but was working on a woodcut in my old cord trousers and shirt-sleeves, when Mr. Ros come into the studio together with the town clerk. I had no idea whatever why they had come. I thought they might want to buy one of my prints to adorn a wall in the town hall, or I might be given some commission for the municipality. I put on my old jacket, and after shaking hands asked them to take a seat. Mr. Ros replied that he would rather remain standing. Then he proceeded to tell me that the Mayor was indisposed and that he, Ros, was acting in his stead. I wondered why he had to tell me all this standing up, and again asked them to sit down. Ros refused a second time and said they had to remain standing a little longer. I didn’t understand it at all. Possibly he had a boil on his backside? Finally he told me the big news: he was honoured to offer me, in the name of our revered Queen, the Knighthood of the Order of Oranje Nassau. As I watched dumbfounded, he took out a beautiful orange box; out came a silver cross inlaid with enamel. He made some unsuccessful attempts to pin this weighty object onto my chest, but he was too nervous – or the safety pin would not go through my lapels. At any rate, your dad is a knight, even if not of the garter. Why in the world they should want to “decorate” me is a complete mystery. I can only hope it is not a mistake. That evening my name was in the paper along with thousands of others who received a decoration in honor of the Queen’s birthday. In fact my knighthood does not amount to much. Van Beinum, the conductor of the famouns Concergebouw Orchestra, was made of knight of the Nederlandse Leeuw [a higher order].
          But to get back to the point: did you ever imagine that your dad, who lives so far away from the bustle and intrigue of the world, working on his prints day after day like a hermit, would some day be drawn into the sickening scene of vain officialdom, despite himself? However, there is one thing they will never get me to do and that is wear a decoration in my buttonhole. When I’m tired, I occasionally travel second class [equivalent to business class?] on the train and I see one of these important gentlemen wearing his decoration. Their deliberate pose and condescending self-satisfied smiles clearly distinguish them from the sad anonymous crowd with empty buttonholes.
          But what on earth can I do about it? Luckily I can swear by God and all his angels that I never moved a finger to get the decoration or licked the boots of any bigwigs.

          In 1955 and 56, Escher completed many famous prints, including the beautiful “Three Worlds” and distinctive “Print Gallery”. During this time, he also sold many prints. For example, he received a check from a Washington art dealer – bring his total for sales in the US to $2125 for the sale of 150 prints! This sum may seem small today (indeed, some individual Escher works from the 1950s sell for nearly as much) but Escher was well pleased with it.

          In 1957, Escher received a commission to do a wall mural in the Dutch city of Utrecht. He worked on this and other projects through most of 1958, also taking another trip around Europe. In October of 1958, his son George finished his University training in engineering, and emigrated permanently to Canada. This was something of a frustrating time of Escher, artistically; several prints he began work on turned out less well than he had hoped. For example, about “Sphere Spirals” he wrote:

          After the first proof my high expectations were, as always, greatly disappointed. I am now struggling on – with some feeling of despair – so that I at least achieve a passable result.

          In terms of Escher’s work, we can also see a definite trend beginning in 1956-58 toward merging the themes of approaching infinity and tiling the plane. Beginning with the print “Smaller and Smaller” (1956) and continuing through “Whirlpools” (1957, shown at right) and up until his last print “Snakes”, Escher sought a way to express infinity within the bounds of a finite print. Prior to 1958, all save one of his works show objects shrinking toward the center of the print. After 1958, all such prints show objects shrinking toward the outer edges.

          The change in approach to showing infinity was due in part to Escher seeing an article by Prof. Coxeter of Ottawa, which included an illustration of a system for reducing a plane-filling motif with increasing distance from the center of a circle. Escher interpretation and extrapolations of Coxeter’s system appear in no less than 6 major works. Escher found the effect beautiful, but was sometimes worried that viewers would not.

          While a small circle of mathematicians had been appreciating Escher’s work since the 1940s, it was in 1959 that he met Prof. MacGillavry. This lady academic arranged for Escher to give a talk about symmetry to an international meeting of crystallographers in England. Also in 1959, Escher received from friends a copy of an article by L.S. and Roger Penrose, describing various sorts of ‘impossible objects’. The article mentioned some of Escher’s older works, and also inspired a few. For example, the very famous print “Ascending and Descending” (1960) is based on the endless stairway described in the article.

          Early in 1960, the first book of Escher’s prints was released, Grafiek en Tekeningen, with descriptions of 76 works by Escher himself. The book helped Escher gain recognition among mathematician and crystallographers, including some in Russia and Canada. Before even giving his lecture to the Cambridge crystallographers’ meeting in August of 1960, Escher also arranged to give it again in Canada and the US. When he finally gave the Cambridge lecture, it was very well-received; Escher also had a great time in England, being a something of a guest of honor at the meeting, and the only artist in attendance.

          In the last months of 1960, Escher went on an long trip by freighter to the US and Canada. In addition to giving lectures in Boston and Ottawa, he was able to meet his infant grand-daughter. He made the acquaintance of several professors at M.I.T., some of whom later became friends and good customers. In all, the year 1960 was a very successful one, both artistically and financially; correspondence from that year clearly shows Escher to be in good spirits and very busy filling orders.

           

          Mathematical and crystallographic aspects of Escher’s periodic (tiling) works became quite popular in the late 1950s and 1960, and in 1961 he gave permission for a book about them to be published under the auspices of the International Union of Crystallography. The book, Symmetry Aspects of M.C. Escher’s Periodic Drawings by Prof. Caroline MacGillavry, was published in 1965.

          Could use some more here about the Escher’s work in 62 and 63, as well as the planned trip to Boston in 1962 that never took place.

          In 1964, Escher went to North America again to see his son and deliver a series of lectures. Unfortunately, he fell ill almost immediately upon arrival, and after surgery in Toronto he and his wife returned to Holland. The lectures, which Escher had written out in full, were published more than two decades later as part of the book Escher on Escher (Abrams, 1986).

          Escher’s wife was never happy living in Baarn. In 1968 she moved back to Switzerland, and lived there the rest of her life. Escher himself stayed in Baarn, and immersed himself in work. His health was failing, but he continued drawing and printing woodcuts.

          In 1970, after another round of surgery, M.C. Escher moved to a new apartment in the Rosa Spier House in Laren, the Netherlands. His new rooms included a studio, but his health was too poor to do much work. He continued to correspond with various friends all over the world, including his boyhood companion Bas Kist. A comprehensive book about his life and work was published in Dutch at this time, and other books were in preparation. Escher lived long enough to see the first book, The World of M.C. Escher, translated into English and become very successful.

          During the month of March, 1972, Escher’s condition deteriorated. His family gathered around him, taking turns sitting by his hospital bed. On March 27, 1972, he died, at the age of 73.

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        The Nazi persecution of the Jews touched Escher in a very personal way. His old teacher, Samuel de Mesquita, a Jew, was taken away by the Nazis in January of 1944, and was killed. Escher helped to transfer Mesquita’s works at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. He kept for himself a sketch that bore the imprint of a German boot, and kept it with his drawing supplies for the rest of his life. In 1946, he organized a memorial showing for Mesquita at the Stedelijk

        Immediately after the war ended, Escher participated in a show of works by artists who had refused to collaborate with the Nazi regime. Afterwards, he earned several new commissions, including one to make 400 copies of one of his prints for distribution to schools.

        In 1946, Escher became interested in a new technique: mezzotint. While very laborious and time-consuming, the resulting works could show very subtle and delicate lines and shadings. Possible one of Escher’s most famous mezzotint works, and one that shows off the technique well, is the 1948 Dewdrop.

        In 1949, Escher and two other artists held a major exhibition in Rotterdam. In addition to showing their prints, all of the artists gave talks and demonstrations about their technique. Escher sold dozens of prints, including one of the huge Metamorphosis.

        In addition to doing woodcuts, lithographs, and an occasional mezzotint, Escher took on several unusual commissions in 1949/1950. Working with a weaver, he designed a tapestry, and at the request of manufacturing giant Philips of Holland, he designed a ceiling decoration for a factory (in celebration of the firm’s 60th anniversary). It is a good measure of Escher’s growing fame that he was beginning to get as many requests for these kinds of services as he could handle. Although some serious print collectors in America knew about Escher’s work, he was not yet popular outside of Europe.

        Fame in America began for Escher with two magazine articles. Due to recognition in the art journal The Studio, Time-Life journalist Israel Shenker interviewed Escher at his home in Baarn. The interview took place in late 1950, and articles about Escher and his work appeared in the 4/2/51 Time and the 5/7/51 Life. The articles gained some attention, and orders for Escher work increased greatly.

        Escher sometimes crafted models or figures in clay, wood, string, or other material to assist himself in visualizing subjects of his prints. For example, the famous Reptiles from 1943 depicts a tiny crocodile crawling out of a tesselation and over some books; according to his George Escher, the little croc was crafted from plasticine and posed with some items found on a desk. In 1951 Escher created a peculiarly compelling lithograph named House of Stairs which featured an odd little animal. Escher modeled the “curl-up” in clay prior to beginning the lithograph.

         

        Gaining Popularity

         

        The Later Years

         

    • By the end of 1936, Escher had finished most of the prints for the Adria company. One of the other works during this time was based on a sketch from the trip: it was Escher’s first print of an impossible reality, called Still Life with Street. He had begun to think more about artistic expression from images in his mind, rather than directly from his observations and travels.

      Also in 1936, Escher visited Alhambra for the second time, again studying the Moorish tilings. This visit, plus his departure from Italy, can be seen as forces which pushed him in new directions. In a 1960 book introduction, he wrote the following.

      The fact that, from 1938 onwards, I concentrated more on the interpretation of personal ideas was primarily the result of my departure from Italy. In Switzerland, Belgium, and Holland where I successivly established myself, I found the outward appearance of landscapes and architecture to be less striking than those which are particularly to be seen in the southern part of Italy. Thus I felt compelled to withdraw from the more or less direct and true-to-life illustrating of my surroundings.

      These personal circumstances, caused in part by the brewing war, were in large part responsible for Escher turning inward for vision.

      In mid-1937, the Escher family resettled in Ukkel, a suburb of Brussels, Belgium. In October, Escher showed his brother Beer the plane-filling tilings he had been working on. Beer, a professor of geology, was apparently impressed with work and with the potential applications to crystallography.

      In 1938, Escher continued to experiment with plane-filling techniques, shapes, and transformations. In order to give the impression of infinite extent, he tried first tried making the figures more vague toward the edges of the print, and later by scaling the figures smaller as they approached the center, or smaller as they approached the border. One of the most beautiful motifs Escher created was that of two birds flying in opposite directions. This became the basis for the famous print Day and Night, which is still one of his most popular single works.

      On June 14 1939, M.C. Escher’s father, G.A. Escher, died in his home in the Hague.

      Several months after his father’s death, Escher began work on a new major work. He had already done a woodcut named Metamorphosis [1937], it showed a city block transforming into a little human figure. The new Metamorphosis II was to show a sequence of ten transformations, and at 19cm x 3.9m it was his largest print. As another experiment with tilings, he carved a motif of swimming fish onto a beechwood sphere, completely covering the surface. Escher was extremely fond of this little sculpture, keeping it with him the rest of his life.

      In May 1940, the Nazi army invaded Holland and Belgium; Brussels and its suburbs were occupied on the 17th. At the end of May, Escher’s mother died. Due to the invasion, he missed her funeral at The Hague. Escher spent the rest of 1940 settling his mother’s affairs, and executing a commission to decorate the town hall of Leiden. He and Jetta found a house in Baarn, Holland, and moved there in February of 1941.

       

  • Maurits Cornelis (M.C.) Escher was born on June 17, 1898, in the Dutch province of Friesland. His parents, George Arnold Escher and Sarah Gleichman Escher, had three sons of which Maurits (called Mauk for short) was the youngest. His father, George, was a civil engineer. The Escher family was living in Leeuwarden in 1898, where George served as Chief Engineer for a government bureau. The family lived in a grand house named “Princessehof,” which would later become a museum and host exhibitions of M.C. Escher’s works.

    Young M.C. Escher moved with his family to Arnhem. He attended elementary and secondary school there, and also in the seaside town of Zandvoort, where he lived for a while to improve his health. In 1907, he started learning carpentry and piano. In secondary school, his marks were poor except in drawing. His art teacher took and interest in his drawing talent, and taught him to make linocuts. He failed his final exam and thus never officially graduated.

    In 1913, M.C. Escher met his lifelong friend Bas Kist in religious school (which he attended at his parent’s direction, even though he wasn’t very religious). Kist was also interested in printing techniques, and may have encouraged M.C. to make his first linoleum cut works. Amoung these early works is a portrait of his father which is the oldest surviving work by the artist. In 1917, the two friends visited the artist Gert Stegeman, who had a printing press in his studio. Some of M.C.’s work from this year were apparently printed at Stegeman’s.

    Also, in 1917, the Escher family moved to Oosterbeek, Holland. During this year and the following few years, M.C. Escher and his friends became very involved in literature, and M.C. began to write some of his own poems and essays.

    In 1918, Escher began private lessons and studies in architecture at the Higher Technology School in Delft. He managed to get a deferrement on military service in order to study, but poor health prevented him from keeping up with the curriculum. He was rejected for enlistment in the military service in 1919, and as a result could not continue school (he had never successfully graduated from high school!). During this difficult period, Escher did many drawings, and also began using woodcuts as a medium. It was also at this time that his work began to receive favorable reviews in the media.

    Still trying to pursue a career in architecture, M.C. Escher next moved to Haarlem and began studies as the School for Architecture and Decorative Arts. After on a week in the city, he met the artist Jessurun de Mesquita. After seeing Escher’s drawings, Mesquita and the school’s director advised him to continue with them. He began full-time study of “the graphic and decorative arts” in the fall of 1919. Also at this time, he acquired a white cat as a present from his land-lady.

    In 1921, Escher and his parents visited the Riviera and Italy. Unimpressed by the tropical flowers of the mediterranean climes, he made detailed drawings of cacti and olive trees. He also sought out high places and dramatic vistas to sketch, some of his later works were influenced by these sights.

    Escher started to experiment with themes that would suffuse his later works around this time. The woodcuts he did for a humorous booklet Easter Flowers exhibit several: mirror images, crystal shapes, and spheres.

    The first print by M.C. Escher to sell in large numbers was St. Francis (Preaching to the Birds), a woodcut that Escher claimed to have “worked on like a madman.” He finished out the year doing some sign work and a few commisioned prints. In 1922, in search of fresh inspiration, he decided to go to Italy.

Tutto è arte…informale. Arturo Carmassi


Arturo Carmassi nasce il 2 luglio del 1925 a Lucca e già bambino con la famiglia si trasferisce a Torino dove studia e lavora fino al 1952. Segue dei corsi alla Scuola del paesaggio Fontanesi e all’Accademia Albertina, fin da subito entrando in contatto con la cultura e l’ambiente artistico intorno a lui. Influenzato dal cubismo, visita alcune città d’Europa tra le quali Zurigo, Berna, Parigi dove lavora per un periodo prima di trasferirsi a Milano. Confrontandosi con la tradizione delle Avanguardie Storiche, Carmassi ben presto si distinguerà per un fare artistico autonomo. Dalla fine degli anni ’40 l’artista espone con delle personali in alcune gallerie torinesi con buon esito da parte della critica che gli favorirà l’incontro successivo con alcune delle più grandi espressioni artistiche di allora (vedasi la partecipazione alla Mostra Internazionale dell’Art Club e a Pittori d’oggi. Incontri Italia-Francia, organizzate da Luigi Carluccio). All’inizio del decennio seguente risale l’incontro, trasformatosi in un saldo rapporto di lavoro – diventando suo mercante – e di solida, stretta amicizia, con Gino Ghiringhelli della galleria Il Milione. Dal 1952 si sposta nel culturalmente florido capoluogo lombardo, lavorando in Brera; nello stesso anno partecipa alla XXVI Biennale Internazionale d’Arte a Venezia. Gli Anni ’50 fervono di notevoli impegni per il giovane artista che miete ripetuti successi in personali e collettive in gallerie private e pubbliche in Italia (vince il Premio Nazionale di Pittura Golfo della Spezia tiene la sua prima personale al Milione, poi a Roma, La Medusa,Venezia) e fuori (Svizzera, Germania) fino al continente americano (San Paolo, Brasile- New York). Dal 1955 al 1965 Carmassi si dedica con particolare interesse alla scultura, realizzando opere di grandi dimensioni che pervaderanno con la loro imponenza una sala personale alla Biennale di Venezia del 1962. Dalla seconda metà del decennio si assiste nella personale espressione artistica dell’artista di un’”astrazione informale” ad un cambiamento di rotta volto alla riappropriazione della “raffigurazione”, della rappresentazione del paesaggio e della figura, che coincidono con il ritiro nella campagna toscana, tra Firenze, Pisa e Lucca, a Torre di Fucecchio dove vive attualmente. Questo nuovo linguaggio artistico, pervaso da connotazioni simboliche confermanti certi rapporti dell’artista col Surrealismo, trova espressione in una serie di lavori esposti nel 1969 e ‘72 presso la Galleria Trentadue di Milano. Nella seconda metà degli anni ’70 Carmassi manifesta un preponderante, dominante, interesse per la scultura oltre che per le tecniche della litografia e calcografia e attraverso importanti monografie (tra le quali quella di Giovanni Accame del 1980) in cui si presentano le sue diverse tecniche artistiche egli viene individuato come uno degli artisti degni di nota nel panorama della cultura internazionale,venendo chiamato ad esporre e presenziare ad incontri di cultura in Musei ed Istituti in Europa e America fin nei decenni successivi, di intensa attività. Nel 1986 l’Accademia di Francia a Roma dedica una mostra al Museo Immaginario di Carmassi in cui recenti lavori dell’artista condividono lo spazio con quelli di illustri artisti del passato (Dürer, Redon), contemporanei (De Chirico, Picasso, Kandinsky, Miro) e di culture africane, oceaniche. Nel 1992 e ‘94 espone a Firenze, alla Galleria Il Ponte, dipinti dei primi anni Cinquanta e Sessanta e lavori su carta dagli anni Settanta agli anni Novanta. Quest’ultimo decennio Carmassi, pur lavorando sulle ricerche degli anni recentemente precedenti, sottopone il proprio linguaggio espressivo ad una sorta di “semplificazione”, eliminando qualsiasi dato superfluo, con il riconfermarsi di un’opera estremamente “moderna”.