The painting from the beginnings to the linoleum
30/03/2019 – 22/09/2019

From 30 March to 22 September 2019 the CAMeC Centre of Modern and Contemporary Art presents “Mondino in colour. The painting from the beginnings to the linoleum”, a retrospective which covers the whole of Aldo Mondino’s painting production.

The exhibition is promoted by the Municipality of La Spezia and produced by the CAMeC Centre of Modern and Contemporary Art from a scientific project of the Aldo Mondino Archive. Inauguration will be on Friday 29 March at 6 p.m.

This exhibition can be seen as a counterpart to the exhibition “Aldo Mondino the sculptor” (Pietrasanta, 2010), concentrating this time on painting, a natural, special medium for the town of la Spezia which has hosted the Premio del Golfo, one of the most important 20th-century painting awards.

Aldo Mondino always thought and lived as a painter. His “shortsightedness” in relation to realism over the years became a means for getting to know the world in his own particular way, without ever perpetuating a repetitive style. At the beginning of the ‘60s with him the barriers between painting and conceptual art had already disappeared, indeed nobody has ever managed to imprison his work inside a precise definition.

In his early career in the late ‘50s and early ‘60s, at the height of the crisis of Informal Art, the young Mondino was drawn to a gestural surrealism, hectic and populated with signs and images recalling the works of Matta, Lam and Tancredi. He studied etching in Paris under Stanley William Hayter, in whose atelier Picasso, Chagall, Giacometti, Pollock and many other great artists of the time also worked. After this he perfected his knowledge of the mosaic with Severini, because technique for him was a rule to be first understood, then reinvented with original solutions. Over the years his idea of graphics becoming painting and vice versa took him in a unique direction. He did not wish to annul painting but to renew it, even though he absorbed the post-Informal crisis. Within the artistic environment of the time he tried to understand the many trends which were opening up to the social, economic and cultural changes of those fast-moving years crowded with men and ideas.

The CAMeC presents thirty or so works on canvas, paper and linoleum, done from 1961 to 2000 and all coming from the Aldo Mondino Archive and a selected group of lenders. From his early paintings, passing through the “Squared paper pictures” and the fake etchings, we arrive at the linoleum works which made the artist popular also with the public at large. The appearance of this support in the 1980s derived from an obsession with graphics, linked to the idea of colour and the pictorial sign. Linoleum, a very important material for etching techniques, was used by Mondino as a support for some famous series of paintings such as the “Dervishes” or the “Jews”. Apart from the play on words implicit in the etymology of the term “linoleum” (linseed oil/oil on linen), the artist was also fascinated by the large variety of colours and textures in a simple, industrial material, as was also the case for Eraclit , the “poor” wood of the workshops on which he painted his equally famous “Carpets”. The exhibition itinerary also includes a work from the CAMeC collections: Longships, ca. 1980, mixed technique on canvas, 25 x 35 cm, Cozzani collection.

On the occasion of the exhibition the first volume of the General Catalogue of the works of Aldo Mondino (Allemandi, 2017) will be available at the bookshop, with comments by authoritative experts and critics of the author’s work, and with the photographic reproduction of over 1600 archived works.

Aldo Mondino was born in Turin in 1938, where he died in 2005. In 1959 he moved to Paris where he attended the atelier of William Hayter, the École du Louvre and the mosaic course of the Fine Arts Academy with Severini and Licata. In 1960 he returned to Italy and began to exhibit at the Galleria L’Immagine of Turin (1961) and the Galleria Alfa of Venice (1962). The meeting with Gian Enzo Sperone, the director of the Galleria Il Punto, was fundamental for his artistic career and the fellowship with the Archive still persists. Important one-man shows were also presented at the Galleria Stein of Turin, the Studio Marconi of Milan, the Galleria La Salita of Rome, the Galleria Paludetto of Turin and the Isabella Bortolozzi Gallery of Berlin. His main exhibitions include two participations in the Venice Biennale of 1976 and 1993, his one-man shows at the Museum fur Moderne Kunst – Palais Lichtenstein of Vienna (1991), the Suthanamet Museo Topkapi of Istanbul (1992, 1996), the Jewish Museum of Bologna (1995), the Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna of Trento (2000). His works are in the permanent collections of the most important national and international museums and in numerous private collections.

Exhibition promoted by:
Municipality of La Spezia
Mayor and Councillor for Culture, Pierluigi Peracchini

and produced by :
CAMeC Centre of Modern and Contemporary Art 
Director of Museums and Cultural Services,  Marzia Ratti

from the scientific project of : archivio Aldo Mondino

with the contribution of : COOP Liguria, ENEL


Press Office Municipality of La Spezia: Luca Della Torre | Tel. +39 0187 727324 |

CSArt – Comunicazione per l’Arte: Chiara Serri | Tel. +39 0522 1715142 | Cell. +39 348 7025100|

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