Monday, 6 February 2012

Alberto Burri: 'Form and Matter', Estorick Collection, London

A big 'Abstraktion Welcome' to our new guest editor, Jason Daye:
Alberto Burri 'Sacking and Red' Oil and sacking cloth,1954
Unbelievably this is the first retrospective exhibition in the UK of Alberto Burri, entitled 'Form and Matter' it's being held at the Estorick Collection in leafy Canonbury Square, North London until 7th April 2012.

A huge influence on the Arte Povera movement and a proponent of Art Informel, Burri is best known for incorporating found materials such as hessian, charred wood, plastic and tar in his paintings of the early 1950s.  This rich celebration of texture was often juxtaposed with areas of vivid  red pigment, thought to have been a response to his experiences as a military physician during World War II. He also had a stronginfluence on British abstraction especially through arrtists such as Sandra Blow, see our earlier post.
He later developed a fascination with fissures, either in large cracked paintings he called Cretti, or in his Land Art Cretto over the earthquake-ravaged town of Gibellina.
Alburti Burri 'Red Plastic' Oil on canvas/mixed media, 1961
Burri’s work is essentially about the process of 'making painting' as a work. If that sounds too dry, the consequence of his process is raw beauty. Visit Estorick to worship at the altar of iconic mid-century abstraction.

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