Emilio Scanavino (Genoa 1922 – Milan 1986), Tav. 169
Acrylic on cardboard cm 45 x 45 signed lower right on the front and on the back.
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F. De Bartolomeis, Il progetto dell’irrazionale di Scanavino, Edizioni del Naviglio, 1972, tav. 169, p. 137
A multifaceted and elusive artist of categories, Emilio Scanavino has absorbed throughout his career as a painter and sculptor a series of international experiences that have contributed to the complexity of his talent, in constant change, and little relegated to the current of the informal to which he is often (uniquely) associated.
From his stay in Paris to the end of the Forties, where he was fascinated by the writing of Eduard Jaguer and the painting and photography of Wols, up to London in the Fifties, when he frequented Francis Bacon and exhibited at the Whitechapel Gallery, Scanavino established with his contemporaries – the artist was linked to Lucio Fontana by a profound friendship – a direct dialogue on the importance of the sign as a means of expression.
«The shapes of Scanavino – noted Longari – declared in a perpetual state of metamorphosis and transformation, in a sort of eternal transit, speak a language that is surrealistically surrealistic, but of an antiretoric and scarified surrealism, far from any literary inclination».
During the Seventies Scanavino spends longer and longer periods in his home in Calice Ligure; his sign is simplified and is gathered in grids or geometric architectures, which are a prelude to a reflection on the objectification of painting. Precisely at this stage of the production of the Ligurian artist is this trapezium on a dark background, part of the so-called “irrational project” which is also the title of the volume edited by Francesco de Bartolomeis in which acrylic is reproduced. The work in question is a manifesto of the informal and gestural Scanavino which gives the expression a sudden impulse”. In controlling the shape of the trapezium, Scanavino aims to build a living thing, to surprise an event, to insist on penetrating its roots, to arrive at the organic and instinctual birth of thought.