Enrico Castellani: Sculpture
Lévy Gorvy, London and Paris
August 31 - September 25, 2021
In Paris and London, Lévy Gorvy presented Enrico Castellani | Sculpture (2021), an exhibition of aluminum cast wall sculptures. It was the first presentation in either country of the sculptures that preoccupied the late Italian master during his mature years. Completed between 2006 and 2013, the works suggest important links to the artist’s earliest experiments in metal and reinforce his skill in pushing the boundaries of materiality and space. From the early 1960s onward, Castellani experimented with brass, zinc, bronze, and other plastic or ductile materials capable of being modeled for small groups of works. The catalyst for his late aluminum series was an abiding interest in mirrored surfaces and his experiments using glass with a silver interior.
While deceptively similar to his paintings, Castellani’s wall-based sculptures, weighing between 20 and 350 kilograms, have a distinctive presence and create extraordinary visual experiences for the viewer through their surfaces and their occupation of space. These works spotlight the enduring radicality of Castellani’s approach, serving as both climax of and coda to decades of his tireless experimentation with his renowned Superficie works.
Highlights of the exhibition include Superficie argento (2006), a dramatic nine-panel work that encapsulates Castellani’s preoccupation with space, surface, and materiality—as well as Superficie rossa (2006). These and other works from this historic series were juxtaposed with an untitled standing sculpture comprising four scales from 1973, a work that embodies the force of Castellani’s decades-long investigation into positive and negative space, and his ambition to establish a potent artistic language that continues to influence younger generations of artists today.