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Emilio Vedova

/Works and biography

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Spazio Opposto - IV, 2006
Monotype (oil on paper), 57 x 75 cm
Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, Venice
Gift, Emilio and Annabianca Vedova Foundation 2007.149
Fondazione Emilio e Annabianca Vedova


From June to September 10, 2007 the Peggy Guggenheim Collection paid tribute to Emilio Vedova (Venice, 1919-2006) with the presentation of a selection of monotypes entitled Spazio Opposto (Opposite Space), 2006. The homage was accompanied by the volume Vedova, Monotypes, a project of Art of this Century and Sandro Rumney. It reflected the enduring nexus of two friends, Peggy Guggenheim and Emilio Vedova, and the city of Venice. The young Vedova was the first artist, together with Giuseppe Santomaso, to meet Peggy Guggenheim upon her arrival in Venice in 1946. She rightfully saw in him a rising star of the European avant-garde. Two works acquired by her in the 1950s remain in the collection: Image of Time/Barrier (1958) and Hostage City (1954). Today the presence of Vedova in the Peggy Guggenheim Collection is enriched with the donation by the Emilio and Annabianca Vedova Foundation of the monotype Opposite Space IV (2006).

Although technically a print, the monotype is a unique work of art whose process challenges conventional approaches to painting. It is made by drawing or painting on a smooth, non-absorbent surface. The surface was historically a copper etching plate but in modern practice can vary from zinc or glass to acrylic glass. The image is transferred to paper by pressing the two together, by hand or by means of a press. The composition is made of liquefied colours, usually oil, but also tempera, gouache and ink. The pigments are applied directly with a brush or in the case of Vedova, with his fingers. The monotypes of this series, Opposite Space, suggest dynamic liquefied spaces that recall the reflections of the Venetian lagoons.

credits: Hangar Design Group