Contemplator Enim VI (Fuori l'autore)

Collage on photograph
70 x 50 cm
Owned by the artist


Here, as in other works, Paolini strips the space bare to make way for the light, the perspective and the space itself. All of the elements disappear except the canvas, which, as in Las Meninas, has its back to the viewer and opens up multiple perspectives that extend to infinity through the open door. Even the artist has disappeared. The mirror has here become an empty space; the reflection has vanished as if it had been cut out of the picture. The title, Fuori l’autore, thus has a double meaning: on the one hand it refers to this disappearance of the author, and on the other is a nod to the traditions of Italian theatre. (After a successful premiere it is customary to call for the author of the play to come on stage with the cry of ‘Fuori l’autore!’).

In the series Contemplator Enim, comprising seven works, Paolini reflects on the author and on the creative process itself, its tools and techniques, on the basis of a space in which the perspective plays a major role.

Giulio Paolini

Génova, 1940

Painter, sculptor and writer. In 1960 he reacted against Informalism, aligning himself with the Arte Povera movement, using bare surfaces and collage to posit new relationships between artist, support and spectator. In his work he utilizes paintings by other artists, plaster copies, old prints and excerpts from literary texts. Since 1969 he has been intensely active in the theatre.