Bologna, Italy

Mario Merz

Galleria d'Arte Moderna, Bologna

The paintings that made up part of this exhibition document one particular branch of Mario Merz’s recent work—the large configurations, inspired by the prehistoric imagination, which he has used as archetypes of an original, exemplary, and normative state. These works unfolded along the walls of the large polygonal hall of the gallery, the succession of large, raw-canvas surfaces creating the first and outermost of the three centripetal structures that organized the space. This pictorial perimeter surrounded a large igloo at the room’s center, made up of irregular panes of glass on iron supports and in turn containing another, smaller igloo, also of glass. Piles of dry branches leaned against the interior walls of the larger igloo; shards of marble and fragments of glass were scattered around its base. To the usual fascination of Merz’s work was added a concern with the poetics of the

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