Carla Accardi

Carla Accardi was born in Trapani in 1924 and died in Rome in 2014. In the early ’40s she attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Palermo and, for several months, the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence. In 1947 she made her first abstract painting and gave life to Gruppo Forma together with Ugo Attardi, Pietro Consagra, Piero Dorazio, Mino Guerrini, Achille Perilli, Antonio Sanfilippo and Giulio Turcato. Until 1952 Carla Accardi’s work developed on concrete painting, considered and assimilated in Paris. Since 1953 her research was based on the poetics of the sign and on the idea of “figure” imagined in colors, developing over the years in sets of segments articulated in the alternation of white and black, to which red was often added. In 1954 the meeting with Michel Tapié was particularly important: the French critic was indeed one of the protagonists of her theory of art autre. In the 1960s, Carla Accardi’s work stood out for a stylistic change: a color with much more vivid tones reappeared and the sign changed its structure. She realized the first works on sicofoil, a transparent plastic material, that occupied the artist’s research in the following decade: from the pastel colors to the mid-70s the sicofoil was perfectly transparent. In the following years, her work continued based on pictorial interventions in close relationship with other precedents, but returning to the canvas as a support and accentuating the graphic quality of the sign.

Her solo exhibitions have been held in prestigious institutions: MUSMA, Matera (2013), Puglisi Foundation – Palazzo Valle, Catania (2011), Moscow Museum of Modern Art (2008), MACRO, Rome (2004), Musée d’Art Moderne de the Ville de Paris (2002), MOMA PS 1, New York (2001), Museum of Contemporary Art – Castello di Rivoli and Kunstmuseum, Bonn (1998), Academy of France, Rome (1997), Kunstverein, Ludwigshafen am Rhein (1995), Museum of Contemporary Art – Castello di Rivoli (1994), Galleria Civica, Modena (1989), Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (1988), Italian Institute of Culture, Madrid (1985), PAC, Milan (1983), Galleria d’Arte Contemporanea, Florence (1952).

Among the most important group exhibitions in public and private institutions: Museo Ettore Fico, Turin (2018), Museo del Novecento, Milan (2017), Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome (2013, 2002), Palazzo Fortuny, Venice (2011), MAXXI, Rome (2010), Centre Pompidou, Paris (2009), MOCA The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2007), Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Turin (2003), Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice (2002), MOMA PS1, New York (1999), Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Bologna (1998), Guggenheim Museum, New York (1994), Royal Academy of Arts, London (1989), Kunstverein, Frankfurt (1985), Palazzo Reale, Milan (1980), The Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis (1963), Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, Rome (1953).

Among the international exhibitions: Rome Quadriennale (2005, 1992, 1973, 1965, 1955), Venice Biennale (1993, 1988, 1978, 1976, 1964, 1948), Sao Paulo Biennial (1971).

Her relationship with Galleria Fumagalli began in 1993 when she had her own personal exhibition curated by Giovanni Maria Accame, who also signed the text in the catalog. It continues in 1995 with the production of a volume published during the exhibitions at the Kunstverein Ludwigshafen am Reim, at the Stadtische Galerie Wolfsburg and at the Italian Cultural Institute in Wolfsburg. In 1999 it was published by Edizioni Charta, curated by Germano Celant and with the support of Galleria Fumagalli, the first reasoned monograph on Carla Accardi’s work which presents her artistic production from the beginning until 1997; from 2000 it is also available in an English edition.