'Grande madre' by Salvatore Provino. Oil on paper applied on canvas. Italy, 1970s.
61.5 x 41.5 cm including frame.
Salvatore Provino was born in Bagheria (Palermo) in 1943.
In the early 60s he moved to Rome; there he used to visit the studio of his fellow citizen Renato Guttuso and in 1964 he had his first solo exhibition at the Galleria Consorti.
During the late 60s Provino’s painting was still figurative with Francis Bacon and Mario Sironi being important influences on his production. Themes frequent in this period are the difficult living conditions of the working class experiencing the effects of the late industrialization process in south of Italy and the exploitation of man.
A series of encounters with the mathematician and philosopher Lucio Lombardo Radice led the artist to learn about the theories by Nikolaj Ivanovič Lobačevskij. The non-Euclidean geometry with its new point of view on space influenced Provino’s art pushing it away from being figurative to become conceptual and abstract.
The trip to Peru in 1979 was crucial in the development of the painting of the mature stage of his career.
Through a subtle use of colour and geometry blended in a style reminiscent of abstract expressionism,
his art tells about philosophy and the invisible.
Salvatore Provino has been professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Palermo and at the University of Naples.
He had solo exhibitions all over Italy including those in important venues such as Palazzo dei Diamanti in Ferrara, Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, Castel dell'Ovo in Naples and Magazzini del Sale in Cervia.
Since 2002 his works are in the collection of the National Museum of China in Beijing, as well as in museums in the cities of Shenzhen, Shenyang, Canton, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Changshu. A number of international exhibitions brought Provino to Greece, the United States, Bulgaria and Argentina.
He continues to exhibit his works in his native Sicily regularly. In 2012 a huge solo show, featuring 110 paintings executed between 1978 and 2011, was held at Palazzo Sant’Elia in Palermo.