Sir Eduardo Paolozzi British, 1924-2005

Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, CBE was born in Leith, Edinburgh to Italian parents. He began studying at Edinburgh College of Art in 1943 and went on to attend both the Slade School of Fine Art and University College London from 1944-1947. After his studies, he travelled to Paris where he became acquainted with Alberto Giacometti, Jean Arp, Constantin Brancusi, Georges Braque and Fernand Léger. After Paris, he returned to London where he set up his studio in Chelsea which quickly became inhabited with hundreds of found objects, models, sculptures, materials, magazine cuttings, tools, toys and stacks of books which he integrated into both his graphic and sculptural work.


Paolozzi first came to public attention in the 1950s when he produced a range of striking screenprints and Art Brut sculpture. He became a founding member of the Independent Group in 1952, which is widely regarded as the precursor to the mid-1950s British and late 1950s American Pop Art movements.


In his earlier work Paolozzi concentrated on the human form, representing the body often as brutalised and anguished. His sculptures incorporated impressions made by machine and other metal parts into the wax maquettes, which were then cast in bronze. By the early 1960s Paolozzi had developed a new way of creating his sculpture by collaborating with industrial engineering firms and eventually using aluminium.


Paolozzi exhibited widely and was awarded the CBE in 1968 and in 1979 was elected to the Royal Academy. A number of his public works can be seen in London and include the mosaic designs in Tottenham Court Road Tube Station, Piscator outside Euston Station and Newton, After William Blake in the courtyard of the British Library.


In 1994 Paolozzi donated a large body of his works to The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, and in 1999 the Dean Gallery opened to display a remarkable permanent recreation of his studio.

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