Pablo Atchugarry. Lumière de Paris
Lumière de Paris
Tornabuoni Art & Le Village Royal
In 1979, the Uruguayan artist Pablo Atchugarry extracted from a block of Carrara marble a work called La Lumière (Light), named like the epiphany of a sudden revelation, that of the infinite elegance of a precious stone. It was the first encounter between an artist and what was to become his favourite material, which he explored throughout his international career, drawing on Greek, Italian and Gothic art.
Relying on centuries-old techniques, Atchugarry infuses marble with dynamism, allowing it to escape its intrinsic heaviness. He works with white Carrara marble, black Belgian marble and pink Portuguese marble, stretching them vertically as if playing with a malleable, organic material. These series of vibrant columns, similar to those exhibited in the courtyard of the Village Royal, soar towards an infinity, the illusion of which Atchugarry has made the heart of his work. In recent years, research into lost-wax casting has led to a series of bronze sculptures characterised by more aerial and dilated forms, one of which is exhibited here.
In 1982, Atchugarry moved to Lecco in northern Italy. He received numerous public commissions, both in Italy and abroad. These include the Uruguayan government’s sculpture park, the city of Monaco, the Bellinson Centre in Petah Tikva, Israel, and the Fontana Collection in Italy. In 2002, Atchugarry was awarded the Michelangelo prize by the city of Carrara in recognition of his artistic career, and the following year he took part in the 50th Venice Biennale, exhibiting in the Uruguayan pavilion.
Having always shown a keen interest in promoting and disseminating the arts in his own country, Atchugarry opened the Fundación Pablo Atchugarry in 2007 in Manantiales, Uruguay. This art centre is designed as a place for dialogue, encounters and exchanges between established and emerging artists and the general public.
In the courtyard of the Village Royal, the Lumière de Paris exhibition devoted to Pablo Atchugarry brings together his sculptures with the works of the great post-war Italian masters exhibited in the adjacent space at 26 rue Boissy d’Anglas. In Rythme et répétition. A Contemporary Aesthetic, Tornabuoni Art reaffirms its commitment to promoting post-war artists such as Lucio Fontana (1899 – 1968), Turi Simeti (1929 – 2021), Enrico Castellani (1930 – 2017), Dadamaino (1930 – 2004), Alberto Biasi (1937), Alighiero Boetti (1940 – 1994) and Paolo Scheggi (1940 – 1971). The seriality of their work, the constant repetition of the same ‘monochrome aesthetic’ or ‘mono-tone’, is seen here as constitutive of their oeuvre.
The importance given to monochromy, minimalism and the development of an aesthetic linked to personal technical exploration, differentiating the artist from the group in which he may evolve, are recurrent elements in the works of the Italian post-war masters. We find these characteristics in the sculptures by Pablo Atchugarry that enliven the courtyard of the Village Royal.
selection of works