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Mario Merz

Triplo Igloo, 1984

Aluminum, steel, glass, clamps, clay, 2.79 × 6.36 m (diameter)

Triplo Igloo, by Mario Merz, is a large semi-sphere sculpture composed of three superimposed domes constructed out of a metallic armature, onto which glass panels are precariously balanced. Favouring the igloo and the spiral for their structural relationship to the Fibonacci sequence, this simple emblematic structure represents for Merz the ideal model of the house, a reference to the nomadic artist who resists stylistic uniformity. Concave or convex, the dome structure’s interior/exterior duality is one of its fascinating characteristics, and it is precisely the transformed and adapted nature of the semi-sphere that viewers may discover in Merz’ work. It combines space with a play of oppositions that manifests in the tension between concave and convex space, between interior and exterior, and between the transparent and reflective properties of glass. True to the ideals of Arte Povera, which questioned and attempted to subvert established norms, Merz’s work introduced non-conventional materials that broadened the notions of what art could be.

Mario Merz

Milan, Italy, 1925-2003

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