Graphic Works by Pino Pascali
curated by Roberto Lacarbonara
20 December 18:30
Frittelli Arte Contemporanea is proud to present the exhibition PINO TRADEMARK. Graphic Works by Pino Pascali, one of the most renowned Italian contemporary artist, from Dec. 20th to Feb 9th. Curated by Roberto Lacarbonara, the exhibit derives its name from Pascali’s bizarre signature of a letter he once sent to the art dealer Gian Enzo Sperone, thanking him for showcasing his works.
PINO TRADEMARK is also an ironic allegory of the artist’s vision of America – often critical and sarcastic of its capitalistic hegemony – whose “models” Pascali quoted in his graphic research of new stylistic solutions for his ad campaigns. Most of the works on display – drawings, collages, emulsions, mixed media – relate to Pascali’s investigation of moving pictures. As special highlights, the sketch Super, exhibited here for the first time, and two of the artist’s most famous video commercials: The Killers, proposed to a large Italian ice-cream company and developed after the company’s refusal, and Cirio, a video in which the artist reinterpreted the famous Neapolitan masks Pulcinella and Pazzariello.
Pascali’s career as an artist was short and intense. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome in 1959 and soon started making a name for himself as a talented scenographer. He drew sketches, drawings and short movies for Carosello (an Italian television advertising reel) and other TV shows, as well as drawings and models of sailing ships, trains and armours. In 1965, he held his first solo show at the Galleria La Tartaruga in Rome. By 1968, he had attracted the attention of several major Italian art critics – such as Vivaldi, Argan, Calvesi, Grandi, Rubiu, Boatto, Bucarelli, De Marchis – and leading gallery owners – Sargentini, Sperone, Jolas to name a few. In 1968 he was also invited to exhibit his works at the 34th Venice Biennale, where he was given a personal room. As a sculptor, scenographer and performer, Pascali combined primary and mythical forms of Mediterranean culture and nature (Mother Goddess and Venus, the Sea, the Land, the Fields, the agricultural tools and rituals) with childish representations of Play and Adventure (prehistoric animals, animals of the zoo and the sea, war toys, the world of Tarzan and the jungle, caterpillars and worms, costumes, Pulcinella). He translated the world of imagination into monumental forms and essential structures, concise like the Apulian romanesque features and the medieval bestiary characteristic of its churches, which at the same time remind us of the symbols of spreading mass culture (comics, cinema, fashion).
Pascali died in 1968, at the very young age of 33. He was awarded posthumous the International Prize for Sculpture at the end of the 34th Venice Biennale.