Alberto Giacometti

Switzerland / 1901 - 1966
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“Artistically I am still a child with a whole life ahead of me to discover and create. I want something, but I won’t know what it is until I succeed in doing it." Alberto Giacometti



Alberto Giacometti (10 Oct. 1901 – 11 Jan. 1966); Swiss sculptor, painter, draughtsman and printmaker. Born in the canton Graubünden's southerly alpine valley Val Bregaglia, as the eldest of 4 children to Giovanni Giacometti, a well-known post-Impressionist painter. Coming from an artistic background, he was interested in art from an early age.

...In 1922 he moved to Paris to study under the sculptor Antoine Bourdelle, an associate of Rodin. It was there that Giacometti experimented with cubism and surrealism and came to be regarded as one of the leading surrealist sculptors. Among his associates were Miró, Max Ernst, Picasso, Bror Hjorth and Balthus.

Between 1936-1940, Giacometti concentrated his sculpting on the human head, focusing on the sitter's gaze. He preferred models he was close to, his sister and the artist Isabel Rawsthorne (then known as Isabel Delmer). This was followed by a phase in which his statues of Isabel became stretched out; her limbs elongated.

...Regarding Giacometti's sculptural technique and according to the Metropolitan Museum of Art: "The rough, eroded, heavily worked surfaces of Three Men Walking (II), 1949, typify his technique. Reduced, as they are, to their very core, these figures evoke lone trees in winter that have lost their foliage. Within this style, Giacometti would rarely deviate from the 3 themes that preoccupied him—the walking man; the standing, nude woman; and the bust—or all three, combined in various groupings."

In a letter to Pierre Matisse, Giacometti wrote: "Figures were never a compact mass but like a classical busts of his youth with nostalgia, and tells the story of the existential crisis which precipitated the style he became known for. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alberto_Giacometti)
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