Sale: 401 / Post War/Contemporary Art, Dec. 08. 2012 in Munich Lot 266

 
266
Antonio Calderara
Spazio, colore, luce (6-teilig), 1971.
Oil on panel
Estimate:
€ 30,000 / $ 34,200
Sold:
€ 61,000 / $ 69.540

(incl. 22% surcharge)
Lot description
Spazio, colore, luce (6-teilig). 1971-1973.
Oil on panel, mounted in object box side by side.
Monogrammed and dated "12. 71. 73" on verso of one of the plates. Je 54 x 27 cm (21,2 x 10,6 in). Object box: 72 x 195 x 4,8 cm (28,3 x 76,7 x 1,7 in).

We are grateful to the Fondazione Calderara, Milan, for their kind support in cataloging this lot.

PROVENANCE: Malborough Galleria d'Arte, Rome (with gallery label on verso).
Galleria la Polana, Genua (verso with stamp).
Private collection Southern Germany.

EXHIBITION: Antonio Calderara. Works from 1928-1978. Commemorative exhibition on occasion of the 85th birthday, Galerie Regio, Freiburg i. Brsg., 17 June - 21 August, 1988 (with exhibition label on verso).

After his first one-man exhibition in 1923 Antonio Calderara broke off his studies in engineering in 1925, which he had begun two years earlier at the Milan Polytechnicon. As an autodidact Calderara was a painter who experimented a great deal between the 1930s and late 1950s, attempting various different styles in a relatively short period of time. His oeuvre includes still life related to Morandi's quiet meditative style as well as landscapes and figurative scenes in an Impressionist style and portraits in the manner of the "Neue Sachlichkeit". Searching for his own artistic expression, the misty landscape of Lake Orta - where he lived for several decades - became his favourite subject. Gradually, in reaching a higher degree of abstraction in his Lake Orta landscapes, Calderara finally abandoned landscapes and architecture and discovered a completely abstract world in which reality is apparent only as a memory. According to the artist himself, he painted his first purely abstract work in 1959. From this period onwards he developed an abstract style in pastel colors, which is reminiscent of works by Albers. Based on the principle of the Golden Section, numbers and proportions were of great importance to Calderara. The artist called his geometric approach the "spazio mentale", "mental space". He differs from other Constructivists and "art concrète" artists in that he had no strictly radical concepts or color schemes - despite all his systematics - but was partly guided by intuition. Calderara described his artistic intention with the words: "I want to paint nothingness, the void, which is the whole, silence, light, order, harmony. The infinite."

Through a simplicity in form and color, Calderara’s pictures possess a unique poetry. In the 1960s and 70s, a time during which America and Western Europe became media societies with an inflationary amount of images, Calderara created meditative color spaces of an enormous sensitivity and silence. In his examination of color and its form of appearance, Calderara soon explored realms of perception where he made pictorial worlds of a highly sensitive coloring, with barely perceivable obfuscations and elucidations of the color values. This work also has human perception as its subject. In soft coloring and serial arrangement six color plates are placed side by side. Format and motif remain constant, just the coloring of the outer-most and inner-most color field, as well as the colored edges vary. Any gestural impulse is avoided, the line is subordinate to the surface. Through staggering the three color fields, Calderara creates a rudimentary spatial illusion on every plate. The observer’s view, seemingly into the image’s depth, finds both target and quiet point in the tiny dark square. In our large work Calderara unites six of his color spaces to a mellow color composition of highest harmony.

Antonio Calderara lived in Milan and Vaciago until his death in 1978. [JS].

266
Antonio Calderara
Spazio, colore, luce (6-teilig), 1971.
Oil on panel
Estimate:
€ 30,000 / $ 34,200
Sold:
€ 61,000 / $ 69.540

(incl. 22% surcharge)