Mimmo Rotella

Arco d’Alibert

This show might have been aptly titled “Rotella before Rotella.” Realized between 1954 and 1962, the works exhibited here represent the formative period in the career of an artist who, though he adopted Paris as his home, was Italian by birth. The Rotellas presented here are the ones that precede those celebrated icons that permitted layer upon layer of Hollywood idols, industrial trademarks, and advertising images into the precincts of high art. Before he developed the work that catapulted him to prominence in the ’60s, even before he had recognized the relevance of the urban sign and the iconography of consumerism, Rotella was profoundly nurtured by another line of research, by another culture. In fact, these works demonstrate just how much he drew from the lesson of art informel, from Jean Fautrier, Jean Dubuffet, and from Alberto Burri. Here, anonymous colored paper is lacerated and

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