Rodolfo Aricò was born in Milan on 3 June 1930. Between 1946 and 1950 he attended the Brera Liceo Artistico where he was taught art history by Guido Ballo and later on, in 1951 he joined the architecture faculty of Milan Polytechnic. During these years his interest in painting and philosophy was nurtured alongside a formal education in architecture. In 1957 he joined a group of artists of his own generation whose interest was focused on a painting of precise existential intentions: Giustino Vaglieri, Mino Ceretti, Bepi Romagnoni and Giorgio Bellandi. He soon became dissatisfied and abandoned the group. In this period his work showed affinities with Wols’ poetics and drew inspiration from the aura created by the imagery of Arshile Gorky. Aricò also took an interest in Edmund Husserl’s phenomenology. In 1958 Aricò met Carlo Grossetti who the following year presented his first solo exhibition at the Salone Annunciata in Milan. During this period Aricò placed the pictorial action at the center of his work, focusing on the geometry. In 1962 he took part in the exhibition Nuove prospettive della pittura italiana at the Palazzo Re Enzo in Bologna. In 1964 Aricò took part in the 32thVenice Biennale where he exhibited Trittico dell’esistenza, composed of three large canvases. In this work the serial rhythms were located in square forms placed on a diagonal guideline. In 1965, inspired by Delaunay’s Orphism, he conceived an archetype in the phenomenon of an oblique translation of a disk in the space. During the same year Roberto Sanesi dedicated a book to Aricò’s work titled Reperti: per uno studio sulla pittura di Rodolfo Aricò, and the artist took part in the 9th Rome Quadriennale, resulting in the purchase by the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna of Work in progress. Le “simultanee forme” di Delaunay. Starting from 1966 his reflection on the relationship between surface and object led him to undertake a new phase of research, which saw the creation of pictorial works realized on shaped canvases such as Loud and Assonometria simultanea. In 1967 he was given a solo exhibition at the Galleria L’Attico in Rome with a catalogue text by Giulio Carlo Argan. In 1968 he was awarded a room at the 34thVenice Biennale, in which he created an environment of large works that were clear evidence of the structural nature of his ‘painting-objects‘. This year also saw the beginning of Aricò’s friendship with Toti Scialoja, for whom he was an assistant at the Brera Liceo Artistico. In 1969 he exhibited Pondus, four large three-dimensional structures which, like sculpture, occupy space (now in the collection of the Musei Civici of Cagliari), at the Salone Annunciata, Milan. In the same year he was given a solo exhibition at the Deson-Zaks Gallery in Chicago. The works of the Seventies showed a thinly-sprayed paintings with various superimposed layers of paint that generated a monochromatic finish and Aricò’s research veered towards the reinterpretation of his humanistic vision of the history of art and architectural archetypes as well as of the perspective as the founding moment of the pictorial investigation. The humanist theme of his art was conveyed in his object-structures with titles such as Arco A, Arco B, Quattrocento (siate eterni il più a lungo possibile), and Prospettiva per Paolo Uccello. In 1970 Aricò held solo shows contemporaneously at the Salone Annunciata and the Studio Marconi, Milan. In 1971 he was invited by Gillo Dorfles to take part in the exhibition Hommage a Joan Miró organized in Ciutat de Granollers near Barcelona. In the same year he was appointed to teach set-design at the Academy of Fine Arts in Urbino. In 1973 Maurizio Fagiolo Dell’Arco invited him to take part in the exhibition Iononrappresentonullaiodipingo at the Studio La Città in Verona together with Carlo Battaglia, Claudio Verna and Giorgio Griffa. During the same year Aricò met the poet Carlo Invernizzi,with whom he established what Aricò defined as “an uninterrupted fellowship with intellectual and spiritual influence”. In 1974 Roberto Sanesi gave him a retrospective exhibition at the Centro Internazionale delle Arti e del Costume of Palazzo Grassi in Venice. 1975 saw Aricò’s participation in several exhibitions: Peinture italienne d’aujourd’hui, organized by Giancarlo Politi at the Galerie Espace 5 in Montréal and at the Galerie Templon in Paris; Empirica: l’arte tra addizione e sottrazione curated by Giorgio Cortenova, held in Rimini and at the Museo di Castelvecchio in Verona; and Trompe l’oeil, presented by Gianni Contessi at the Galleria Stendhal in Milan. In the same year he was invited to Spazio attivo/Struttura, an exhibition organized by Guido Ballo at the Studio Marconi in Milan and at the Galleria Rondanini in Rome, where he exhibited Contaminante. In 1976 Aricò was invited to take part in Il colore della pittura, curated by Maurizio Fagiolo Dell’Arco and held in Modigliana. In 1977 the Comune of Ferrara gave him a retrospective exhibition in the Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea of Parco Massari. In 1978 Aricò designed a stage-set for I treni non passano in primavera by Jean Tardieu performed at the Teatro Pier Lombardo (now Franco Parenti) in Milan and directed by Klaus Aulehla, and he was invited by Gianni Contessi to participate in the exhibition I nodi della rappresentazione at the Pinacoteca Comunale of Ravenna which illustrated the analogical relationships between architecture and painting. The artists Gianfranco Pardi, Gianni Colombo and Giuseppe Uncini and the architects Aldo Rossi, Carlo Ajmonino and Franco Purini also participated in this, and Aricò presented an outsize work titled Scena di Ravenna, a commixture of painting, set-design and architecture. In the same year he was appointed to the Chair of set-design at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts where,during the 1980s,he invited leading cultural personalities including Franco Fortini, Eugène Ionesco, Giorgio Albertazzi, Umberto Orsini, Gabriele Lavia, Tadeusz Kantor and Iosef Svoboda to testify to the ways and meanings of artistic life in their own experience. In 1979 Tommaso Trini invited Aricò to take part in the exhibition Sistina società per arte at Arte Fiera Bologna. In 1980 at the Casa del Mantegna in Mantua he held an exhibition curated by Gianni Contessi that investigated the relations between architecture, painting and myth. For the occasion he created Scena di Mantova, a work of disciplinary contamination made up of four wings and a backdrop on which he painted a tympanum based on optics that were the opposite of normal perspective canons. In 1981 Nello Ponente invited Aricò to the Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, for the exhibition Linee della ricerca artistica in Italia 1960/80. In the same year he took part in 30 anni d’arte italiana 1950/80. La struttura emergente e i linguaggi espropriati, at Villa Manzoni in Lecco. In 1982 Aldo Rossi curated the exhibition Idea e conoscenza at the Palazzo dell’Arte of the Milan Triennale where Aricò exhibited Timpano – Pulvis. He then took part in Costruttività held in the Tour Fromage in Aosta, curated by Filiberto Menna. In 1982 he was invited to the 40th Venice Biennale, “Arti Visive ‘82” section, in which he exhibited the work Clinamen/Prometeo. Aricò started to deepen his reflection on a new relationship with the past, seen in its mythical and timeless component, and the began to shatter the geometric patterns that had characterized the previous decades, in favor of an increasingly articulated metamorphosis of shapes and surfaces. In 1983, together with Gianni Colombo, he held an exhibition at Milan’s Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea where he presented a series of recent works together with others dating from 1967-1970. These underscored his redefinition of the specific characteristics of painting in the formal reshaping of his vocabulary of the structured object. In 1985 Aricò took part in L’intelligenza dell’effetto. La messa in scena dell’opera d’arte at Palazzo Dugnani in Milan, an exhibition curated by Adriano Altamira and Francesco Poli, in the context of broadening the perceptual relations between stagecraft and painting. On this occasion Aricò exhibited Portale. He was invited by Riccardo Barletta to Acireale for the exhibition Elogio dell’architettura. In 1986 he was invited to take part in the traveling exhibition curated by Flavio Caroli 1960/1985. Aspetti dell’arte italiana, first held at the Kunstverein in Frankfurt and subsequently in Berlin, Hannover, Bregenz and Vienna. He exhibited at the 42thVenice Biennale, “Il colore” section, with a 1968 work, Struttura. The Galleria Morone of Milan invited him, together with Valentino Vago and Claudio Verna, to the exhibition La forma emozionata curated by Luciano Caramel and the Associazione Culturale Amici di Morterone invited to the exhibition Una ragione inquieta held at the Palazzo Municipale in Morterone. In January 1987 Aricò exhibited at the Studio Marconi, Milan, what he himself defined as “astructural works” such as Instabile confine, Neroblu, and Naturans, together with a series of works on paper and projects. In their lyrical ontology, and with their psycho-sensorial passages, these works express the difficult obstacle of the boundary. In the same year he exhibited in the Loggetta Lombardesca in Ravenna as part of the exhibition Disegnata, curated by Concetto Pozzati. He was also invited by Luigi Meneghelli to take part in the exhibition 20 anni fa, held at the Studio La Città in Verona. In 1988 he took part in Emotion und Methode, first held at the Galerie der Künstler in Munich and then at the Kunstverein in Ingolstadt. Giovanni Maria Accame invited him to participate in Il museo degli artisti at the Palazzo Municipale in Morterone and Ragione e trasgressione in the ex-Convento di San Rocco in Carpi. In 1989 he held a solo exhibition at the Galleria Turchetto/Plurima, Milan, where he was also invited by Giovanni Maria Accame to take part in the group exhibition Le differenze somigliano. Otto pittori 1970-1990. He participated in Quei problematici anni Settanta, curated by Giorgio Cortenova, held at the Galleria dei Banchi Nuovi, Rome. During the 1990s Aricò programmed a series of solo exhibitions in which he began a relation with space that was increasingly physical and corporeal, as the drama of an uninterrupted materiality undergoing implosion and explosion. Parallel to his artistic activity he intensified his theoretical commitment, flanking writings directly regarding his work, visionary stories. In 1990 Elisabeth Bozzi invited him to take part in the exhibition Divina mania. Una poetica bicipite in which the art of Rodolfo Aricò, Carlo Ciussi and Pino Pinelli was presented in relation to the poetry of Carlo Invernizzi. He was then invited to the exhibition La pelle dell’arte. Riflessioni sulla superficie, curated by Lorenzo Mango and held in the Palazzo Municipale in Morterone and the Istituto d’Arte Dosso Dossi in Ferrara, and Electa published the monograph Rodolfo Aricò. L’inquietudine della ragione, curated by Giovanni Maria Accame with a preface by Guido Ballo. In the same year the Lorenzelli Arte gallery in Milan held a group exhibition with works by Aricò, Dorazio, Gardair, Jackson and Matino and the Galleria Studio Grossetti held the exhibition A proposito di pittura: Aricò, Gastini, Nigro. In 1991, at the Galleria Turchetto/Plurima in Milan, Aricò exhibited a series of recent works including Aspro, Fuori posto, Circumflex, and a series of paper works and projects. During the same year the Studio Carlo Grossetti held a retrospective exhibition titled Aricò ‘70 and the Milan City Council organized at the Liljevalchs Konstall in Stockholm the exhibition Il miraggio della liricità, curated by Elena Pontiggia and Elio Santarella, in which Aricò presented works of 1967 and 1970. In 1993 Aricò was invited, with Gianfranco Pardi, to the Palazzo Comunale of Venzone for the exhibition La memoria dell’antico. In Milan he held the solo exhibition Pitture recenti at Lorenzelli Arte. In 1994 he took part in the exhibition Venezia e la Biennale at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna Ca’ Pesaro in Venice during the 46thVenice Biennale. In 1995 Giorgio Bonomi invited him to participate in Trilogia 5 at the Centro Espositivo della Rocca Paolina in Perugia. In 1997, at the A arte Studio Invernizzi gallery in Milan, he exhibited spiritually charged works titled Sere, inspired by the tapestries traditionally hung between the mighty pillars of the Milan Cathedral. In the same year he took part in the exhibition Gefühle der Konstruktion, curated by Claudio Cerritelli and Lorenzo Mango at the Museum Rabalderhaus in Schwaz. In 1998 he was invited to take part in Lo spazio ridefinito, curated by Francesco Tedeschi and held at Villa Burba in Rho, near Milan. In the same year he took part in Arte italiana. Ultimi quarant’anni. Pittura aniconica, curated by Danilo Eccher at the Galleria d’Arte Moderna in Bologna. In 2000 the Associazione Culturale Amici di Morterone invited him to take part in a traveling exhibition titled Il corpofigura dell’immagine. Aspetti dell’arte italiana dal dopoguerra ad oggi held respectively at the Städtische Galerie in Rosenheim, the Musei Civici di Villa Manzoni in Lecco, and the Städtische Galerie Villa Zanders in Bergisch Gladbach. In the same year the Istituto di Pittura of the Bologna Academy of Fine Arts presented Rodolfo Aricò, opere su carta. In 2001 the Galleria Spazio Annunciata in Milan held his last solo exhibition. Aricò died in Milan on 22 June 2002.