Italo De Grandi | Undated
Tempera on paper | 15.5 x 18.5 cm
Period 1985-1988: Reminiscences and fantasy
Imaginary | Landscape | Characters
Inventory IDG-898 | Private Collection
Photo L'Atelier De Grandi
Retrospective I. From Grandi to the Jenisch Vevey Museum 1993
Through this imaginary landscape, Italo creates a mischievous synthesis between the market square of Vevey (his native town in Switzerland), which is very familiar to him, and a town on the shores of an Italian lake (perhaps Lake Orta, not far from his parents' home village). On the one hand there is the classical pediment and columns of the "Grenette", as well as the bell tower of the church of "St Martin"; on the other hand, there is a dome and hills with transalpine curves.
This is egg tempera: colour pigments are added to egg yolk, forming semi-covering colours.
Italo chooses here three restricted and very specific colour ranges: the first one in beige and brown tones (bistres) for all built elements - quay and architecture; the second one in green/brown tones for all vegetation - trees and hills; the third one in green/blue tones for the lake water. The sky is a diluted variant of a mixture of the first two.
A global light includes almost multi-directional, almost shadow-free lighting. In this imaginary composition, the lightness and transparency of the contrasts between light and shadows contributes greatly to the timelessness of the scene.
In the crucible of his quest within reality, Italo reconnects with the imagination of his youth by using tempera: so many scenes he enjoys with tenderness and nostalgia.
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