Details & Cataloguing

19th Century Paintings & Contemporary Art


Julio Le Parc
SERIE 14 N - 4E
Signed, titled and dated 1970 on the reverse
oil on canvas
171 by 171 cm.
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Galleria La Polena, Genova, 1973
Acquired by the present owner from the above


Le Blanc,  Espace d'Art Contemporain de la Brenne,  Julio Le Parc


Jean-Louis Pradel, Julio Le Parc, Milan 1995, p. 46

Catalogue Note

The Argentinean artist Julio Le Parc (born 1928) is one of the most important geometric and kinetic artists from the early sixties. After studying at the School of Fine Arts in Buenos Aires he became interested in the Arte Concreto-Invenci-13n group and Lucio Fontana's Spazialismo movement. In 1958 Le Parc moved to Paris with fellow artist Francisco Sobrino (born 1932) on a French government scholarship.

In 1959 Le Parc began working on his geometrical abstract paintings (based on predetermined systems, first in black and white, then in colour) in reaction to the French abstract painting movement Tachisme, which originated in the work of Victor Vasarely (1908-1997), the writings of Dutch artist Piet Mondriaan (1872-1944) and the tradition of Constructivism).

Le Parc explains The surface Colour Series of which the present painting titled Series 14 N - 4E (1970), as follows:
"I wanted them [colours] to be pure, not spoiled by black and white. I forbid myself to use any colours I didn't choose from the start. The limited 14 colours seemed to resume all the possible variations of the chromatic mixtures. From this scale of 14 colours, I started to make simple mixtures from one or two shades going horizontally, vertically and in diagonal. Those mixtures born from a simple and strict system were multiple.
Later I invented a small machine with transparent tapes where all my shades of colours could appear. Switching them, I could have an incredible choice of mixture. I was impressed of the quantity of the possible changes included in each program. I was keen imagining all the variations succeeding in time and the probabilities were leading me to a new phenomenon: the limitless duration. Each painting which was made with any combinations was a special moment with ever-changing movement and colours."
(Julio Le Parc, 2006)

1960 marked an important development in Le Parc's oeuvre when he co-founded GRAV (Groupe de Recherche d'Art Visuel) in Paris together with Sobrino, François Morellet (born 1926), Yvaral (Jean-Pierre Vasarely, 1934-2002) and others. Le Parc was awarded the renowned Venice Biennale's Painting Prize at the 1966 Venice Biennale. From the 1960's onwards he started his research into three dimensions, introducing movement and light into his artistic practice. Julio Le Parc still lives and works in Paris.

19th Century Paintings & Contemporary Art