Alberto Moretti

<moretti nello studio

The link between Alberto Moretti and Carmignano can be retraced ever since his artistic debut in the early Fourties, as it is demonstrated by some rare pictorial examples and a series of figurative sketches and drawings, inspired by the surrounding reality.
In particular, this creative moment could be circumscribed in the portraits series of his old grandmother, Paola Donati (1945), where the woman is depicted seated, with lowered eyes and her hands folded or intent on sewing. In addition to the them of the portrait, Moretti juxtaposes the reproduction of landscape and views, moulded over the examples of Ardengo Soffici, active in the same years in Poggio a Caiano and of Ottone Rosai, knows in the literary cafés of Florence.

The artistic prelude of Moretti, consistent with the principle of the figurative, immediately  introduces him between the artistic protagonists of a season signed by the gradual but definitive passage from the realistic reproduction to the abstracted-geometric synthesis.

However, before the accomplishment of the pictorial progress in an abstracted- concrete sense , Moretti confronts himself with the artistic tendency addressed to the social commitment, in a manner which is between Expressionism and Cubism, under the wave of what was coming fromFrance, still considered depositary of the civil commitment and the new artistic culture. Some paintings like “Worker” (1946) and “Farmers” (1947) belong to this period. 

The abstracted-concrete evolution, no more referring to external perceptions but to shapes and colours generated by pure mental speculations and technical experimentations, occurs around 1947-1948, when from imitator he becomes art creator. "After the drama of war, there was the need of going towards something that be a liberation from that state, which alienated you and put you in contact with the most deep things, the relationship with cosmos, that which was called geometry, harmony relationships. At that time, I really felt the need to overcome this tragedy and start again  from  what could be the basis of a new artistic expressivity”.

Moretti does no t disown nature, but he scrutinise it under the surface to catch the essence, “the imperturbable” outside time. “If nature is regulated by rigorous geometric rules, it reveals some oscillations in the creative act. Natural shapes deviate from their theoretical model. Well, these  transgressions  are the characteristic of life and the cause for the grace of the shape in which it reveals itself”.

In line with the spirit of his time, thanks such work as Perspective, Dynamic Composition, Poiesis, Idol,  Moretti gets closer to the contextual practices of the abstract artist inFlorenceand the exponents of Concrete Art Movement of Milan, with whom he participates in various exhibitions between 1951 and 1957

Pioneer in the experimentation of different artistic languages, he approaches different practices press such as xylography, lithography and serigraphy.

Between the early Forties and Fifties, he realises the first sketches which will flow then into the expansions, the runs, dilutions of the Abyssal Papers (1951-1953). The new visions seem to wink at Jackson Pollock, at the Spatialism of Lucio Fontana and at the realisations of the Nuclear Movement, opening this way to the subsequent expressive phase of the artistic parable of the master, that is to the lyrical and existential depths of the informal explosion.

“the passage from geometric abstraction to the Informal has occurred by chance, because I used water for my lithographies. (…); and in that exact moment I made some experience with it and with oil paint on paper and these shapes and these colours appeared and I called them Abyssal Papers.”

Moretti’s painting turn  in gesture and materials around the mid fifties seems to pour out the impetus which was shattering his geometric shapes (Tear, 1955). This a new chapter for the artist.

Meanwhile he develops the decision to move toFlorencedefinitely. He exhibits his work independently and collectively at Galleria Indiano, managed by Piero Santi and at Numero Gallery of Fiamma Vigo, with whom he collaborates and where he organises the first exhibition of his informal period. During these years he meets some exponenst of the Cobra group.

During his stay inParis (1953), he attend Denise René Galerie, building ties with some French artists, exhibiting inParis as well.

From 1959 to 1962, he experiments work of synthesis between the informal and New-Dadaism: the assemblages. The operation consists in picking up objects from reality such as advertisement, photos and pieces of newspaper, to put them into a different context, in a work of art. Aedicule (1962), where Moretti appropriates mass media putting them on the canvas, and Vegé (1964), immediately recognised by critics as one of the first Italian declination of Pop clime, are emblematic of this artistic phase.

Over time, he loads assemblages with objects from the farming world, such as iron circles, runners and fabric, like in Tie (1961) where the informal clump, inspired to De Kooning’s influence, replaces the head of a man, a tie is added to human body.

Simultaneously, he takes part in the activity of Quadrante Gallery, founded in 1962, by Matilde Giorgini and, together with the other artists of the Gallery, Berti, Bueno, Loffredo and native, participates in numerous exhibitions inItalyand abroad. He enters the 70’s Group, founded in1963, acompany which successively expands giving birth to the so-called Visual Poetry movement.

During these years he travelled a lot, especially in theUnited Stateswhere he does exhibits and meets the American artists of Pop Art.

At Galleria Indiano he exhibits the primary structures in 1968: gigantic structures consisted of modular elements combined together. The project-drawings realises on big plastic transparent a canvas date back to 1969 and are called Frontal Signs. Such a research is the prelude for the conceptual revolution absorbing Moretti in the years to come. During the Seventies, the artist uses the film camera and photography, two expressive tools which had never shaken up and increase the concept of art more than in that decade.

Therefore, he shoots 8millimeters movies: Material (1973), where he does not use words, but natural sounds, eliminates the sound of the movie camera and reset the cutting. In “The Magical is the Science of the Jungle” (1974), his mental journey takes inspiration from a wild ritual: the Appropriation of the Sun mirrored in the Water. In Ideology as Technè (Venice Biennial, 1978) can be retraced  the research of a Work as Art, which respect man’s personality, as we can assume from the filmsLa Cuffiaand Technè.

In 1970 Alberto Moretti get still closer to informal painting, realising a series of work by oil paint over a raffia basis. The master is interest in social art, its connection with archaic world. The twisted raffia already present in Technè and Work as Art, are now reinterpreted becoming a support for painting.

In the Eighties and Nineties he presents large-format works and continues his research on light, gestures and color, reaffirming, albeit in the informal material expressiveness, his interest in nature, the infinite source of inspiration to which the master has drawn during the course of his entire life.

The Schema Gallery

Moretti is both interpreter and critic of the post-war context in Florence.

In fact, Alberto Moretti, Roberto Cesaroni and Raul Dominguez founded the Schema Gallery1972, inVia Della Vigna Nuova, place of promotion and artistic research, stage of the most innovative artistic experieces in the international and national panorama.
Active since 1994, the Gallery was inaugurated in 1972. The radical architects of the Superstudio were called to set it up: Alfonso Natalini, Cristiano Toraldo of France and Alessandro Magris and Piero Frassinelli, who, in this occasion, arranged not only the equipment of the reticular structure  of the spotlights support, but also displayed their  utopian projects, renowned for the elaboration of theories and the design development which detached from the aesthetic shape-function paradigm.
Ever since the first exhibition, the predilection of the gallery owners addressed to that branch of art which was the most avant guarde, destining itself to the creation of environmental structures, to the use of body as a means of  expressive communication and to the mental process which forerun the artistic creation.In fact, the first artists the Gallery would host and promote were exponents from various artistic movements, such as Fluxus, Minimal Art, Body Art, Conceptual Art and Poor Art.

Today, he exhibition experience and the bibliographical, iconographical and artistic heritage have flown into the Alberto Moretti Archive and into the private collection of the master.

On June 29, 2012 Master Alberto Moretti passed away. He was born in Carmignano and here he lived, but his fame of an artist was well-known inItalyand abroad. Moretti was the founder of the Schema Gallery inFlorenceand of the Schema Polis Gallery in Carmignano.