Ana Sacerdote

Jorge Mara-La Ruche, Buenos Aires

By Victoria Verlichak | November 14, 2012

The work of Ana Sacerdote (Rome, 1925), an artist almost unknown here who migrated to Argentina when Fascism caused havoc in Italy, caused surprise in the Buenos Aires art scene.

Ana Sacerdote

After interacting with concrete and abstract artists in Buenos Aires in the mid-50s, and of painting her first works with forms inspired by abstraction, the artist traveled to Paris on a fellowship. From that moment on, she lived a migrant life, accompanying her husband to different work destinations. In the important book-catalog that comes with the exhibition “Ana Sacerdote: Un caso argentino de la pintura musical”, José Emilio Burucúa writes that her pieces are “pure play of the spirit, […] ideal and aesthetic constructions which prefigure the history of the future, sublimated.”

Echoes of Klee and Kandinsky, sounds of Esteban Lisa (Toledo, 1895-Buenos Aires, 1983) − who cultivated such a low profile that he never showed his work while he was alive − in the oil paintings and gouaches in this exhibition, curated by David Weseley. The language of free abstraction predominates in these pieces of the 1950s and 1960s, full of blotches and rhythms, lines and fantasies. Then both the movement and its subjectivity bloom, and the sonorous dimension of her paintings emerges.

More than fifty years ago, Sacerdote shot Essai de couleur animeé (1959), an animated color essay based on the abstractions she painted and filmed expressly for the project. The movie, shown in the framework of the São Paulo Biennial (1965), shows an impressing editing in black and white. Exhibited in Sammer Gallery at Pinta London (2011), the animation even expresses the artist’s personality, ahead of her time and exposed since she was a child to her cultivated family and her father’s love for music, mathematics and geometry. It is coherent that, in the early 1970s, Sacerdote should become interested in the new media, creating drawings with a computer and experimenting with video art.