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Lcwnurclo. Vol. I I, pp. 210-212. ( Pergamon Press Ltd. 197X. Printed in Great Britain ON M Y NON-FIGURATIVE DRAWINGS ON PHOTOSENSITIZED PAPER AND ACRYLIC PAINTINGS Arno Mandello* 1. I was born in Germany. in 1905, but lost my German citizenship through Hitler's Russcwgesetz (racial law). From the age of 19, I spent most of my life in Paris. There from 1924 to 1939, working in diverse ways in photography , I came in contact with Torres Garcia (painter), Louis Fernandez (painter), Jacques Lipchitz (sculptor), Albert0 Magnelli (painter), Francis Picabia (painter), Max Ernst (painter, sculptor), Julio Gonzalez (sculptor) and Lino Enea Spilimbergo (painter and graphic artist). Both Constructivism and Surrealism have strongly influenced my work. But my dominant interest was in exploring the use of light in photography to produce pictures that can range from the deepest black to the clearest of transparencies. These searches led me more and more into non-figurative compositions. In 1939 my photographic works were exhibited in Paris along with the sculpture of the German artist Moeller-Zorndt. At the beginning of World War 11, I volunteered for military service in the French Army and was accepted in the French Foreign Legion. In 1942, after the fall of France, I escaped to Uruguay where I became ii citizen and resumed my art work. In the years 1947-1951, I had major exhibitions in Montevideo, Rio de Janeiro (at the Museum of Modern Art) and Lucerne (at the International Exhibition of Photography).I returned to Paris in 1951 and exhibited my photographs there for the last time in 1955. At that point I was convinced that photography was no longer a medium in which I could continue to develop my ideas, and I turned to a kind of graphics and later to painting. 2. My change in direction was not abrupt. My new artworks were photogrunis (Fig. 1) and what I call Ii~qht.scuprl,r.s (Fig. 2) [lL3]. Both are made with a lightsensitive medium. but without a camera. Photograms are traditionally made by placing objects on the medium. exposing it to light, and developing and fixing. Making photograms is an old art that has been revived from time to time. Its history has been outlined recently in Leonurdo by Bernheimer [4]. He calls his reflectographs a sublcass of photograms. They are made by directing light from ti lamp filament to a polished surface from which it is reflected to a light-sensitive medium. I think that the making of photogram permits a more direct involvement of an artist for there is more freedom in the placement of selected objects on the medium. *Uruguayan artist living at Bufolaria di Alessnno. Ugento-Lecce, Puglia, Italy. (Received 14 Sept. 1977) Fig. I. 'Iri,s'.plio/ogrcitii. ~lrorogrti~/iic.ptr/~c'r ,ylrwd to i t w i d . 70 x I10 cm. 19.56. I made my photograms by directing light from a photographic enlarger. at a distance of 60 cm. on to the entire surface of photographic paper with objects placed upon it. Then the paper was developed and fixed in the usual manner cmployed in photography. The photogram 'Iris' (Fig. I ) was made in this manner with the usc of several flowers. 210 On M y Non-jigurative Drawings on Photosensitized Paper and Acrylic Paintings 211 Fig. 2. ‘Sntall Galaxy’, lightscape, photographic paper glued to wood, 130 x 45 cm, 1966. My photograms are images obtained from various objects. Lightscapes, on the other hand, may be figurative or non-figurative. In making lightscapes, I employ a small light bulb as a ‘light pen’. I ‘draw’ on light-sensitive material by moving the bulb along the surface as onedoes a pen or pencil. The lightscape‘Small Galaxy’ (Fig. 2) was produced with the use of sand and seeds sprinkled on the photographic paper. I obtained the grainy texture by moving the particles about with both my hand and the ‘light pen’. In some cases, I have used hair, feathers, small leaves and various other materials. The materials on which I ‘drew’ were black and white Kodak bromide enlarging paper and Kodak photographic emulsion that I had applied as a liquid to wooden panels, canvas...


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