Mario Schifano (Libyan/Italian 1934-1998) was one of Italy's best-known contemporary painters. He was born in Homs, Libya, and moved to Rome with his family after World War II and began working as a restorer with his father at the Etruscan museum of Villa Giulia in Rome.
He began painting during the late 1950's and soon became one of the leading members of the avant-garde school that took its name from the Piazza del Popolo in Rome.
But it was not until his return in the early 60's from a prolonged stay in New York City, where he participated in the New Realist group show alongside Robert Rauschenberg, Claes Oldenburg and Jasper Johns, that he made his mark on Italian art with his interpretation of Pop Art. Back in Italy, he regularly exhibited his work in Rome, Paris and Milan. In 1964 and 1978 he participated in the Venice Biennale.
Mr. Schifano was known as an enfant terrible who landed in jail several times on drug-related charges.
He used photography, cinema, television and the Internet in his continuous experimentation with new styles and new materials, and claimed he had not imitated Pop Art but arrived at his style on his own.
Maurizio Calvesi, the Italian art historian who helped start Mr. Schifano's career in the 60's, called him ''one of the greatest of the Italian school of the second half of the century.''
His top reported price was $893,000.00.
This artwork is two-sided on paper. One side is "Surrealist Figures" and on the other side "Abstract." An unusual offering from a great artist.
Artist: Mario Schifano, (Libyan/ Italian,1934 - 1998)
Medium: Two sided ink on paper.
Titles: "Surrealist Figures" on one side, "Abstract" on other.
Size: 12 1/2 by 8 3/4 inches.
Signed: lower left.
Good to Very Good Vintage Condition.
Provenance: Authenticated by Kodner Gallery.