Giovanni AnselmoItalian (Borgofranco d'Ivrea, Italy, 1934)
Grigi che si alleggeriscono verso oltremare (Grays Lightening toward 'Oltremare')
This sculpture is, in effect, a landscape. At the artist's request, the final word in the title's English translation remains in Italian to suggest the work's double meaning. Oltremàre literally means "ultramarine," a semiprecious pigment made from powdered lapis lazuli that artists have used for centuries. This first meaning provides a formal description of the work, which consists of gray blocks of granite suspended by thin steel cables over a small rectangle of dark, intense ultramarine blue painted on the wall. Oltremàre also means "overseas," however, which transforms the work into a poetic landscape of gray clouds drifting over a deep blue sea. The 250-pound rocks seem almost weightless, and the abstract monochrome painting beneath them stands in for the endless horizon of the ocean.