Giorgio Griffa b.1936

This weekend I had the beautiful opportunity to visit an exhibition by the Italian artist Giorgio Griffa in the Serralves Museum in Porto, Portugal.

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Here some information about the artist from the exhibition panels:1(..)

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It was interesting for me to see painting as a performance , and the use of the raw unframed canvases. They had a lot of wrinkles from folding and I asked the staff if it is possible that the wrinkles were there since the 60’s. The canvases are folded again every time they are transported to a new exhibition, so the wrinkles are transforming and a little bit different every time.

The exhibition showed Griffa’s work in chronological order with the first canvases being mostly monochromatic with a simple repetitive and sometimes interrupted pattern of strokes or sponge impressions.

Later they had more colours and more intricate pattern. The arabesque became e recurring element, as well as numbers and some text.

I loved the beauty in the simple harmonious canvases . For me it was a remarquable study in mark-making. One art work looked very very similar to the very first exercise in mark-making of  the first chapter of Foundations drawing:

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It was a revelation to see the beauty in this simplicity. I was also very touched by the quotation of Griffa here above: “the difference between colour and line is illusory because it depends only upon the width of the brush and how the brush is applied to the canvas.”

A very interesting thought as I am now navigating between still life in tone and line.

 

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