Mario Merz

- Selected Works
- Biography

Mario Merz (1 January 1925 – 9 November 2003) was an Italian artist associated with the development of Arte Povera.

Merz discarded abstract expressionism’s subjectivity in favor of opening art to exterior space: a seed or a leaf in the wind becomes a universe on his canvas. From the mid-1960s, his paintings echoed his desire to explore the transmission of energy from the organic to the inorganic, a curiosity that led him to create works in which neon lights pierced everyday objects, such as an umbrella, a glass, a bottle or his own raincoat. Without ever using ready-made objects as “things” (at least to the extent that the Nouveau Realistes in France did), Merz and his companions drew the guiding lines of a renewed life for Italian art in the global context.

In 1968, Merz began to work on his famous igloos and continued throughout his life, revealing the prehistoric and tribal features hidden within the present time and space. He saw the mobility of this typical shelter for nomadic wandering as an ideal metaphor for the space of the artist.

Complete biography:

- Exhibitions
  • 2019

    Mario Merz. Time is Mute - Retiro Park, Palacio de Velázquez, Madrid

  • 2018

    Mario Merz. Igloos - Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milano

  • 2016

    Mario Merz - Early Works - Gladstone Gallery - New York, New York City, NY
    Mario Merz. La natura è l’equilibrio - Fondazione Merz, Turin
    Mario Merz - Sperone Westwater Gallery, New York, NY
    Mario Merz - Skulpturenhalle - Thomas Schütte Stiftung, Neuss

  • 2015

    Mario Merz - Bernier/Eliades Gallery, Atenas
    Mario Merz - Kunsthaus Klüber, Weinheim
    Mario Merz - Numbers Are Prehistoric - Museum of Cycladic Art, Atenas
    Mario Merz. Città irreale - Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venise

  • 2014

    Mario Merz - Pace London, Londres

  • 2013

    Mario Merz - Gagosian Gallery, Paris
    Mario Merz - Pitture 1955 - 1965 - Konrad Fischer Galerie - Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf
    Senza titolo - Meessen De Clercq, Bruxelles

  • 2012

    Mario Merz: Major Works from the 1980s - Sperone Westwater Gallery, New York, NY
    Mario Merz - What Is to Be Done? - Bildmuseet, Umeå
    What Is to Be Done? - Bildmuseet, Umeå

  • 2008

    Mario Merz, 18 September – 18 October 2008, Gladstone Gallery, Chelsea, New York, USA
    Mario Merz, 12 June – 2 August 2008, Sprovieri Gallery, London, UK
    Mario Merz, 4 June – 31 July 2008, Margarete Roeder Gallery and Editons, Soho, New York, USA

  • 2007

    Mario Merz: The Magnolia Table, Sperone Westwater, New York (solo)
    Mario Merz, Salvatore + Carline Ala, Milan, Italy (solo)
    Buchmann Galerie Berlin, Berlin (solo)
    Fondazione Merz, Turin, Italy (solo)
    Disegni, Kunstmuseum Winterthur, Switzerland (solo)

  • 2006

    Mario Merz: 8-5-3, Gagosian Gallery, London, UK (solo)

  • 2005

    Castello Di Rivoli, Fondazione Torino Musei, Fondazione Merz, Turin, Italy (solo)

  • 2004

    In Memoriam, Kewenig Galerie, Cologne, Gremany (solo)

  • 2003

    Galerie Tschudi, Chelsa Madalena, Zuoz/Engadin (solo)
    Fischer Galerie, Düsseldorf, Germany (solo)

  • 2001

    Fondazione Merz, Turin, Italy (solo)

  • 2000

    La Luce di Volta: an installation by Mario Merz, Fondazione Antonio Ratti, Como, Italy (solo)

  • 1999

    Christian Stein Gallery, Milan, Italy (solo)

  • 1998

    Konrad Fischer Galerie, Düsseldorf, Germany (solo)

  • 1997

    Ausgestellt-Vorgestellt III, Skulpturen-Museum Glaskasten Marl, Germany (solo)

  • 1997

    Skulpturen-Museum Glaskasten Marl, Germany (solo)

  • 1996

    Galerie Jule Kewenig, Frechen, Germany (solo)
    Christian Stein Gallery, Milan, Italy (solo)

  • 1995

    Dum u Zvonu, Prague, Czech Republic (solo)
    Vera Van Laer Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium (solo)

  • 1990

    Museo Comunale D'Arte Moderna Ascona, Italy (solo)
    Mario Merz, Il Centro per l'arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci Prato, Italy (solo)

  • 1989

    Mario Merz: A Retrospective, Guggenheim Museum, New York (solo)

  • 1985

    Kunsthaus Zurich Zurich, Switzerland (solo)

  • 1980

    Whitechapel Art Gallery London, UK (solo)

  • 1978

    Tucci Russo Gallery, Torre Pellice, Turin, Italy (solo)

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