Roberto Sebastian Antonio Matta.
Etching on cardboard.
Border: 40.5 x 31.5 cm.
Sheet: 64 x 49.5 cm (approx.).
Since the work comes from a private collection and it’s framed, it’s not possible to disassemble everything due to the perfect size of the sheet.
High-quality refined work from one of the greatest surrealist artists of the 20th century.
Year: 1974 ca.
In good condition with very slight signs at the bottom due to ageing, but that don’t affect the beauty of the sheet (with a small cleaning you won’t see anything, but I think it’s not necessary).
Matta was born in Santiago de Chile on 11 November 1911 from a family of Spanish, Basque and French descent. After studying architecture, in 1934 he moved to Paris, where he worked with Le Corbusier and came into contact with intellectuals such as Rafael Alberti and Federico García Lorca. He met André Breton and Salvador Dalí and joined surrealism, developing a painting focused on psychological morphologies. Breton wrote about him in 1944: “Matta is the one who most honours his own star, who is perhaps following the best way to reach the supreme secret: the control of fire”. He was constantly on the move, from Scandinavia, where he met Alvar Aalto, to London, where he met Henry Moore, Roland Penrose and René Magritte. In Venice he met De Chirico.
Roberto Matta, Three Figures, 1958 ca., M.T. Abraham Foundation.
At the beginning of the Second World War he fled to New York with many other avant-garde artists. Here he exerted a crucial influence on some young artists like Jackson Pollock and Arshile Gorky. He was dismissed by the surrealist group (where he was then readmitted), accused of indirectly provoking Gorky’s suicide because of his relationship with the Armenian painter’s wife. He moved to Rome in 1949. He would become an important link between abstract expressionism and the emerging Italian abstractionism. He left Rome in 1954 and moved to Paris, keeping a close bond with Italy. Since the 1960s he chose Tarquinia as parallel residence, settling in a former monastery of Passionist friars.
Between 1973 and 1976, with the painter and sculptor Bruno Elisei, he designed and built the Autoapocalipse, a house built reusing old cars as a provocation against consumerism. The first two modules were displayed for the first time in Tarquinia (Chiesa di S. Maria in Castello) and in Naples (Phlegraean Fields), then completed (three modules) and displayed in Bologna (Modern art gallery), Terni (piazza of the Municipality), La Spezia (Allende centre), Florence (flights of stairs of San Niccolò-Forte Belvedere). In 1985 the Georges Pompidou Centre in Paris dedicated a major retrospective to him, and in the same year Chris Marker dedicated a documentary to him, Matta ‘85.
In the early 1990s, Matta designed a series of five obelisks-totem-antennas, 10 meters high and made of metal, that he called Cosmo-Now, with the intention of being installed in each continent as a symbol of goodwill and world peace; the place chosen for Europe was the Italian town of Gubbio, linked to Francesco d’Assisi.
His works are displayed in the most important museums in the world (London, New York, Venice, Chicago, Rome, Washington, Paris, Tokyo).
- Roberto Sebastian Matta
- Title of artwork
- senza titolo
- Hand signed
- Image size
- 64×49,5 cm
- Sold with frame