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Ritratto Giuliana Balice

between space and form

Giuliana Balice was born in 1931 in Naples, where she took her diploma in Painting in 1953 at the Accademia di Belle Arti from school of Emilio Notte. Her reflections turned to contemporary aesthetic movements, from Russian constructivism and from De Stijl to Konkrete Kunst. In the 1950s she started having exhibitions: 191, Naples, Academy of Fine Arts, Young Italian Artists; 1957, Bari, Svevo Castle,VII Bari May exhibition, Rome, Palazzo delle Esposizioni Arts Diary Prize. In 1958 she settled in Milan, where she frequented the city’s art circles.

She soon formed a close friendship with Mario Nigro, with continued until his death in 1992.

Having gathered her works under the title Geometric Gleams, In 1965 she held a solo show at Fiamma Vigo’s Galleria Numero in Milan, curated by Lara Vinca Masini, and her participation in the Exhibition of Painting & Sculpture at the F.B.A. Galleries, London curated by Fiamma Vigo. In 1966 she had a solo show, curated by Domenico Cara, at the Spoleto Festival of the Two Worlds, and took part in the Joan Miró International Prize in Barcelona. Next began the rich chapter of her Imaginary constructions, consisting of monochrome three-dimensional works: solid, rational, projects. These works were shown at two solo exhibition in 1969: in Florence at Galleria Il Fiore, curated by Italo Tomassoni, and in Turin, at the Studio di Informazione Estetica, curated by Gillo Dorfles.

There followed a period of study and experiments with a variety of materials from wood to iron, steel and methacrylate, used in designs and works executed as examples of serial repeatability. This period witnessed her active collaboration with Domus magazine in Milan and with its Domus Centre in via Manzoni, where in 1971 a one-woman show of hers was presented. For that occasion she also created a large Action on Environment, and in 1972 she constructed in Turin by decision of Gio Ponti and in conjunction with Eurodomus 4, Nike, four metres of module, situated in an open space.
From the 1970s should be mentioned her participations in Life and Landscape of Capo d’Orlando, and in the Termoli Prize. On both occasions she was awarded prizes by the Juries. In 1974 Alberto Sartoris wrote a critical essay for the catalogue of her solo show at Galleria Il Moro in Florence.  During the same year she was invited to exhibit at the Centroquadro, in the Republic of San Marino, in the exhibition titlet Proposte, which highlighted the value of the poetics of neoplasticism. In 1975 the Rome publishers Arte e Società presented a solo show by her at their Gallery, and published a monographic essay by Guido Montana. For her solo show at the Centro Rizzoli in Milan in 1978, Attilio Marcolli highlighted the interest in social issues displayed by Balice's work, also for the purpose of industrial production.

Her pen drawings Rhythmic Successions on a Score, occupied a long period of study in which  straight and  curved lines describe a rhythmic course. In her subsequent chapters - The Idea, the Project, the Finished Work and, Actions on the Environment, the main intention was to broaden her vision from the central object to its surrounding space, as in Convex White, an important and significant work done in 1983, at the Nuovo Spazio Metropolitano in Milan.

BIANCO CONVESSO, 1982/1983 steel+canvas+wood+tape cm 250 x 640 x 660

In 1983 Alberto Sartoris wrote a monographic essay on the artist’s work: Geometrical Splendour in the Art of Giuliana Balice,which was introduced by Gillo Dorfles and Vittorio Fagone at the Galleria Stendhal in Milan, at a one-woman show in the presence of the Author. Works connected with the theme of Interventi sull’ambiente (Works on the environment) were shown at various exhibitions in Italy and abroad, which included: Art actuel italien, in La Chambre blanche, Quebec, Canada, in 1983; Logos – VIII biennale di arte contemporanea, S. Martino di Lupari (Padua) in 1985; and Sculpt 87/3, at the Musée de Maubeuge, France, in 1987.
From the early 1990s, the artist worked increasingly with Zita Vismara and her Milan Gallery, until the gallerist’s death in 2005. Their collaboration produced solo shows, in 1990 and 1991, and a number of group exhibitions, including Art Frankfurt in Frankfurt, 1995; Artefiera in Bologna, 1996; Mecart 04, in Lugano, 2004; and 40 Years, in Milan, 2005.

In 1994 she exhibited at the Sormani Public Library in Milan with a one-woman exhibition of Engravings: Linear Exercises, which Alberto Sartoris, in his introduction to the catalogue, titled: Absolute Synthesis. To Attilio Marcolli's proposal to participate in events relating to Deconstructivist art, Balice responded by showing at the exhibitions: in 1996, in Gubbio, Palazzo dei Consoli, Decostruttivismo, and in 1997 in Venice, at the Galleria S. Pantalon, The manifesto of Deconstructivist Art. In 1998 she had solo show, a retrospective exhibition titled Asymmetric Constants-Unstable Balance,1970/1998, at the Galleria Aam architettura arte moderna, in Milan curated by Attilio Marcolli. In 1999 she took part in the XIII Quadriennale-Proiezioni 2000 in Rome with sculptures from her Unstable Balance period.

In 2002 works by her were shown at the exhibition Italien-Positionen der Konkreten Kunst, at Forum Konkrete Kunst-PetersKirche Museum, curated by Alberto Veca at the Erfurt in Germany. In 2003 Napolic’è published a monographic essay by Massimo Bignardi surveying forty years of her work: Giuliana Balice-Constructing Space for the Imaginary, in Milan was introduced by Gillo Dorfles, Emilio Isgrò, Alberto Veca. The following years she exhibited in various solo and group shows, which included, in 2004: Modern and Contemporary - One Hundred Works, Galleria Accursio, Bologna; and in 2006: Beyond Rationalism, Haworth Castelli, Milano, design by Dino Gavina.

Works by her have featured at the Collegio Cairoli at Pavia University, in three exhibitions designed by Marco Fraccaro and curated by Fabrizio Parachini, in 2007: The Colour of the Spirit; Art in the Collegio - the Game of Dominoes; in 2008: 80 Artists Reflect (on) Light. In 2008 she exhibited at the Italian Institute of Culture in Stockholm: Exhibition of Engravings of Ravello, curated by A. Patrizia Fiorillo. In 2009 she was invited to the international exhibition: 1919 / 2009 - 90 years of Bauhaus, Forum Konkrete Kunst-PetersKirche Museum, curated by Heidi Bierwisch, Erfurt in Germany.

In march 2010, works by her took part in the exhibition titled Thiry Days N.Y. Project at the Family Bookstore in New York City, curated by Dallas Clayton. The retrospective exhibition of her work, titled Between Space and Form 1961 - 2010, held in 2011 at Villa Rufolo - Fondazione Ravello, was designed by Bruno Mansi and curated by Fabrizio Parachini; there followed a group exhibition in Darmstadt Hommage eine Gründergeneration at Istitut für Neue Technische Form.
In 2013 she took part in Germany at two exhibitions: at Erfurt - Petersberg  was invited to the international exhibition Blik zurück und voraus - 20 Jahre Forum Konkrete Kunst, Petersberg in Erfurt, curated by Susanne Knorr; and in Rehnau to the  Gallery IKKP, Images of the collection Foundation Vera Röhm, Losanna.
Followed in 2014, in Plauen/Germany, by her presence at the Kunst-Konkrete at the Akademiegalerie, curated by Klaus Helbig; in the same year, The idea, the project, the constructed work, was the title of the 1966/2010 solo retrospective which opened on 7 November at  the Valori Tattili Foundation, located in the Asset Bank for a permanent exhibition,  building in the Republic of San Marino, curated by Leo Marino Morganti.
On 16 May 2015, the Directorship of the Umbro Apollonio Museum of Contemporary Art in S. Martino di Lupari - Padova, dedicated La notte dei Musei - Museums Night to her with projections of her historial works, an interview and a retrospective show titled Lo Spazio Bianco (White Space) 1966/2006, the artworks of which be donated to the
Museum's  Collection for a permanent exhibition.
On that occasion the Major Dott. Gerry  Boratto, conferred upon Giuliana Balice the honorary citizenship of S. Martino di Lupari - Padova.

Still consistent with her urgent need to construct, as can be guessed from her most recent works, she dwells on the necessity for a project concretized as an image situated in open space. There are works by Giuliana Balice in Italian and foreign collections and museums.