(Brazilian, b. 1932)
O Trapezista II, 1972
Oil on canvas
50-3/4 x 43-1/4 inches (128.9 x 109.9 cm)
Signed and dated lower right: Thomaz 1972
The two O Trapezista (The Trapeze Artist) paintings from the McKaughan collection are stellar examples of the whimsical subjects and pastel coloration of the Brazilian Surrealist artist Thomaz Ianelli. In each, a harlequin-acrobat delicately twists over a trapeze bar, suspended below a billowing white circus flag. The vast expanses of negative space accentuate the cut-out appearance of the figures. Indeed, Ianelli's brand of Surrealism couples the collage effects of Synthetic Cubism, evidenced in his smaller Dance Bird, with the pictographic symbolism of Surrealist Paul Klee, viewable in this collection in Clutter Quilt. Far from nightmarish, Ianelli's imagery -- childlike jugglers and tumblers and everyday objects such as flowers and pipes -- pictures the unconscious as a cheerful fantasy world.
John McKaughan wrote to Ianelli in 1971, "I take great pride, now, in having the Thomaz. I have searched for many years for a painting of yours which I felt exemplified your talents and technique in combination with a sophistically simple storyline. I now have found that great combination in the painting O Trapezista."
Born and raised in São Paolo, Ianelli received his early training in painting and illustration from his older brother, Arcangelo, and later studied design at the Association Paulista de Belas Artes. A noted draftsman, he taught drawing classes at the Centro de Estrudos Brasileiros, Lima, in the 1960s. His noteworthy achievements include serving as a delegate from Brazil to the 1979 International Congress of Plastic Arts in Stuttgart and receiving in 1995 a merit of commendation from the Academia Brasileria de Arte Cultura e História.
Estimate: $12,000 - $16,000.
Overall very good condition: two minor abrasions in upper left quadrant; very faint 4" scratch in lower central region.
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