Ugo Attardi

Ugo Attardi was born in Sori, near Genoa, in 1923.

After attending the art high school in Palermo, in 1941 he enrolled in the Faculty of Architecture but was unable to attend the courses due to the war. Arriving in Rome in 1945, a guest of Pietro Consagra and Renato Guttuso, and inspired by the numerous cultural initiatives that emerged in the post-war period, he began his career as a painter. In 1948, he shared the experience of Forma Uno, an abstract artistic movement, with Carla Accardi, Pietro Consagra, Piero Dorazio, Mino Guerrini, Achille Perilli, Antonio Sanflippo, and Giulio Turcato.

In the early 1950s, influenced by the works of Francis Bacon and George Grosz, he changed his style, moving away from abstraction and directing his research towards greater expressionism. He participated in the XXVI and XXVII editions of the Venice Biennale, starting his printmaking production in the same years, a technique he practiced throughout his career.

In the early 1960s, he participated in numerous national and international exhibitions, displaying his works in Prague, Moscow, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Berlin, and New York. In 1961, along with Ennio Calabria, Fernando Farulli, Alberto Gianquinto, Piero Guccione, Renzo Vespignani, and critics Antonio Del Guercio, Dario Micacchi, and Duilio Morosini, he co-founded Il Pro e il Contro in Rome, a movement born out of the need to oppose abstraction with figurative painting.

The themes of conquest, abuse of power, and travel, extensively explored in his sculptural work, arose from the artist’s reflections during a trip to Spain. In 1971, he won the Viareggio Prize for fiction with the book “L’erede selvaggio” (The Wild Heir). In 1976 and 1982, the artist was honored with two major retrospective exhibitions in Ferrara and Milan. In 1983, the Centre Georges Pompidou dedicated an event to his sculptures and a ballet to his works.

The 1990s were characterized by the production of important sculptures such as “I sogni del Normanno” (The Dreams of the Norman), created in 1992 for the Palermo airport, and “L’Ulisse” (Ulysses), placed in the gardens of Battery Park in New York in 1997. He passed away in Rome in 2006. His works are part of important Italian and international public and private collections.

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