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  • Meridiana (con valvola)

Ettore Colla was born in Parma in 1896. He attended the Accademia di Belle Arti in Parma, and he was a soldier during World War I, where he was severely injuried. In 1923, he moved to Paris, where he attended the ateliers of internationally renowned sculptors such as Bourdelle, Brancusi and Laurens, and in 1926 he moved to Rome, establishing a studio on his own.

In 1932, he found a job as an art teacher in Naples, and in 1936 in Rome. During these years his works where visually near to the Novecento group and to the sculpture of Arturo Martini. As many other Italian artists, after World War II Colla started exploring the expressive possibilities of abstraction. He also experimented painting for the first time.

In 1950, he founded the group Origine along with Mario Ballocco, Alberto Burri and Giuseppe Capogrossi. Origine was a movement of abstract art that later became an art gallery in Rome (Galleria Origine) and that expressed his views throught the periodical Arti visive (visual arts). His abstract geometric works of the ’50s are the most important and well known of his entire production. Colla created geometrical figures in the space, focusing on a two-dimensional conception of the sculptural work. He mostly used iron sheets, often found in industrial deposits. This practice induced critics to put his work in relation with the Dadaist practice.

Later in the ’50s he pursued two-dimensional sculpture, creating wide murals always using iron sheets. During the ’60s, however, his research focused again on geometry and geometrical figures: he executed Spiral, one his most engaging works, in 1961. He died in Rome in 1968.