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Mimmo Rotella

Mimmo Rotella (Catanzaro, Italy, 1918 - Milan, Italy, 2006) was an Italian artist who focused his work in painting and collage fundamentally. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Naples after leaving the army in 1944. A year later, just after the war, he moves to Rome where he comes into contact with avant-garde. There he developed a form of pictorial expression of neo-geometric nature. In 1949 Rotella creates a method called expression epilastic, a mixture consisting of words with sounds and onomatopoeias.

In 1951 he traveled to Paris and participated in the Hall of the New Realists. He also travels to America where he created a large mural and continued working on his phonetic poems at Harvard University and at the Library of Congress in Washington. There he met artists like Rauschenber, Oldenburg, Yves Kline, Pollock and Twombly.

After returning to Rome in 1953 he cuts his production since he thinks there is nothing new to do in art. However, he discovers a new element of artistic expression, the billboard. Rotella start making compositions with pieces of posters that he tears of the street walls, giving rise to decollage, opposed to Cubist collage, which makes up so Dada. These works can be understood as a fusion between the NeoDada and Pop Art.

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