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Mario Merz
SENZA TITOLO (UNE SOMMA REALE È UNA SOMMA DI GENTE)
Лот продан 578,500 GBP (Цена продажи с учетом процента покупателя)
ПЕРЕЙТИ К ЛОТУ
30
Mario Merz
SENZA TITOLO (UNE SOMMA REALE È UNA SOMMA DI GENTE)
Лот продан 578,500 GBP (Цена продажи с учетом процента покупателя)
ПЕРЕЙТИ К ЛОТУ

Details & Cataloguing

20th Century Italian Art

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Лондон

Mario Merz
1925 - 2003
SENZA TITOLO (UNE SOMMA REALE È UNA SOMMA DI GENTE)
each panel numbered 0, 1a, 1b, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, respectively, on the reverse
ten gelatin silver prints laid down on wood panel, neon tubing and wire
each photograph: 26 by 26cm.; 10 1/4 by 10 1/4 in.
overall: 49 by 346cm.; 19 1/4 by 136in.
Executed in 1972, this work is from an edition of 5.
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This work is registered in the Archivio Mario Merz, Turin.

Происхождение

The Artist
Libero Grande, Naples
Sale: Sotheby's, London, Property from the Collection of Libero Grande, 19 October 2004, Lot 58
Acquired directly from the above by the present owner

Описание в каталоге

Executed in 1972, the present work – another version of which resides in the Tate collection, London – beautifully reflects the artist’s mystical views about mathematics and was intended to represent universal principles of creation and growth. Mario Merz was a leading member of the Italian Arte Povera group, whose use of ordinary – or “poor” - natural and manufactured materials to poetic effect earned him international recognition and acclaim. Beginning in 1970, instead of using the classical artefacts favoured by many Arte Povera artists, Merz drew on another aspect of Italy's heritage: the discoveries of the 13th-century Pisan mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci, in whose eponymous number sequence each integer equals the sum of the two preceding it: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8 and so on.
Guided by the importance of this numerical progression in nature, Senza titolo (Une somma reale è una somma di gente) depicts patrons at the Ristorante della Spada, Turin, whose numbers increase according to the Fibonacci sequence illustrated in neon. Since 1965, Merz had embraced neon as a key visual symbol for natural states of flux. The flow of its electrical current married order and disorder, just as the Fibonacci numbers surprisingly underlie seemingly chaotic processes of natural multiplication. As Merz knew, the flowering of artichokes, the distribution of seeds on a pine cone, the speed at which a fern uncurls, and the branching of honey bee families all observe this single rate of growth.   
Beginning and ending the present work is an empty restaurant, and a number without a photograph, respectively. This lack of perfect symmetry, and hence also closure, suggests an organic continuum ad infinitum, beyond our understanding and awareness of existence. As Merz explained: “It is the proliferation of numbers. Numbers reproduce themselves like men, bees or rabbits. If they do not reproduce, they would cease to exist. This series is life” (the artist quoted in: Lucy Lippard, Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object from 1966 to 1972, New York 1973, p. 247).
Public conviviality takes centre stage in Senza titolo (Une somma reale è una somma di gente). Socialising diners proliferate until they exceed the architectural frame to populate the terrace. As sites of social contact, tables recur throughout Merz’s oeuvre as symbols of human solidarity. Emphasising the organic and lived over the formal and abstract – by asserting that “a real sum is a sum of people” – the present work expresses the heart of Merz’s preoccupations. Significantly, an identically-titled work possessing a total of eleven slightly larger photographic prints (each 24.7 by 31.5cm.) was exhibited at Documenta V  (1972) in Kassel, Germany. Multiple works from this period play with the theme of sequential photographs depicting dining communities, attesting to the utmost importance of this theme in Merz’s oeuvre.

20th Century Italian Art

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Лондон