Farewell to Turi Simeti: the artist who made the oval his signature style leaves us for Covid

Sicilian artist Turi Simeti died of complications from Covid-19 in Milan at the age of 91. His stylistic hallmark was the oval.

Sicilian artist Turi Simeti died in Milan to Covid at the age of 91.

Born in Alcamo in 1929, he moved to Rome in 1958, where he met Alberto Burri and began frequenting his studio. From these first contacts with art, he created a first series of polymateric works in the 1960s and, in line with his experiences in the international sphere (he stayed in London, Paris and Basel), his style is characterized by monochromy and relief, revolving mainly around a recurring geometric element, the oval, which will become typical of his production.

He shared the visual and structural researches close toprogrammed art and the New Tendency and participated in various international exhibitions focused on this current.

Worth mentioning because fundamental to his artistic activity is the invitation to exhibit at the international exhibition Zero Avantgarde, held at Lucio Fontana ’s studio in Milan in 1965. In the same year he moved to the Lombard capital and held his first solo exhibition at Galerie Wulfengasse in Klagenfurt. Between 1966 and 1969 he stayed for long periods in New York, invited as Artist in Residence by Fairleigh Dickinson University: he set up his own studio in the metropolis where he produced many works that fully followed his stylistic signature. In 1971 he made a performance in Genoa: Destruction of a Glider, the remains of which he preserved in signed and numbered blue bins. In the 1970s diptychs and polyptychs with an often off-center projecting element made their appearance within his art, and he began to experiment with different formats and silhouettes, which would lead to greater spatial complexity in later years. He also opened his own studio in Rio de Janeiro, where from 1980 he began to work and spend winter periods. During the 1990s his production focused on the multiplication and dispersion of volumetric elements in the surface of the work.

Throughout his activity he exhibited in Italy and abroad in solo and group exhibitions. A protagonist of spatialism, his name is alongside artists such as Agostino Bonalumi and Enrico Castellani.

Ph.Credit Archivio Turi Simeti

Farewell to Turi Simeti: the artist who made the oval his signature style leaves us for Covid
Farewell to Turi Simeti: the artist who made the oval his signature style leaves us for Covid

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