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Nuccio Fontanella

L extase
Bronze coulé à la cire perdue


Autobiography

« They call me Nuccio, that’s not a nickname, I have always been called so because my grandfather was called Gaetano and I was called Gaetanuccio.
I was born on 22nd October 1936 in Brusegana.

I grew up at a profane convent, in Brusegana, in the province of Padova, inside the agrarian institute « Delgli Abruzzi de Duca » where my father worked as a headmaster.

Most of my artistic choices refer  to this uncommum place where I spent the first years of my childhood .
I used to be a beloved child, very lucky up to the age of 10 . I was constantly in contact with nature, I learnt about the plants, the country, the animals.When I feel like having a rest in a corner of serenity I like to think of good things with a bad taste "of my old house crowded with people, involved in warmth, life and love. At that time I used to live in the house of my grandmother Silvia, and my grandfather Beppi. I used to stay with them when my parents were not in Italy. My grand mother used always to say : « Give some plaster to that child at least he will  stay quiet. And I used to keep quiet for long hours, making objects out of plaster.
The old convent was surrounded by a high wall and and in the outskirts used to lie  a huge  garden full of flowers, fountains, magnificent trees, of fruits of all inimaginable types.

That was my kingdom, I used to play always there in that enchanting and marvalous*spot. Summer that was a festival of colours and the different scents used to be spread in the sky thus the different seasons could easily be identified.

Even in winter, when fountains turned to iced statues, and trees shorn of their leaves, used to give magic effects to that place.
I do not remember having ever found out such pictures in any other place with the eyes of an adult.
Schooling, since the primary school had been an atrocious plight !Regarding my cousins, parents and friends, I used to be a very bad model usuitable to  be followed.Because in that time, in a good middle-class family being a male artist, was considered as a great curse !

Then I was compelled to attend the secondary school, till the time the teachers fired me because of my misbehaviour.  In that institute , I learnt to play the saxophone whenever  I could  " get free". I was involved in various light orchestras.

Since that time many years elapsed, and this has enabled me to make a living from this marvelous  game, called "sculpture".
Yet that was a big effort and a state of utter exhaustion because this art needs both a physical and psychical strengh.

I am perfectly aware that sharing life with a sculptor like me, could be extremely difficult, and very demanding, I need to love my work, my creations, my enthusiastic trend , my stress altogether with me my own person.

I am always within a "short circuit", but sculpture has a splendid power to modify everything and the quality of being a  shock absorber.
Achieving making sculptures, means to put it otherwise, making musical works, but the means are different.

My works tell stories of human beings. The glistening and mat effects reveal these creatures with their shadows and their lights that have been corroded by existential acid.

I wish my works were lighter, so that they could fly over in the sky, I feel upset as I know that this wish could never turn into reality.»

Nuccio Fontanella - 1936 - † 20.01.2005

Nuccio by Nina Brissot-Carrel

«Speaking about beauty when referring to Fontanella’s works, is somewhat a pleonasm. What he produces, is mostly the atmosphere within which the reminescences of a passion life are mingled.

Fontanella had a gift, loaded with an eternity obsession , to be able to channel life into his creatures, a stream of life and pain. His bronze productions breath  hey produce motion expressing as many cries of joy as well as heartbreak tears.
A situation in a fragile balance which gives a surrealistic dimension to the whole work and produces  an irresistible envy to study it, to touch it and understand it.

But, could we really grasp the deep strength  which used to give Fontanella the power of contradictory feelings to shape which, under his hands, became new beings ? Who could really define the unreal of Fontanella ?

May be we could really have a dialogue. With these mysterious heads with stacking masks with his fire horses or flying centaurs ? May be we could guess slender and twisted forms of these limed sylph-like closely stuck creatures in an expressive sybaritism ?
Should we settle within this surrealistic field, a peculiar universe, to try to collect some drops of a smooth spirit on this beautiful and crazy world  ?
May be, the veil woven out of emigma and prudery, obscurantism, clarity. A veil in tatters of knowledge resulting in a very intimate life and full of imagination.»

Nina Brissot-Carrel