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Fonseca, Gonzalo (1922–1997)

Fonseca, Gonzalo (1922–1997)

Gonzalo Fonseca (b. July 1922; d. June 1997), Uruguayan sculptor. Born in Montevideo, Fonseca traveled frequently and was carving in stone by the age of fifteen. He entered the school of architecture at the Universidad de la República Oriental del Uruguay, Montevideo, in 1939 but stayed only three years. Instead, he worked with the Taller Torres García studio (TTG) and began to study pre-Columbian art and architecture, and painted several constructivist murals in Montevideo. He settled in New York City in 1958 and began making reliefs in cement and wood that featured semi-abstract motifs and objects; in the aggregate, these function as symbols or, almost linguistically, as signs. In 1959 he completed a glass mosaic for the New School for Social Research.

In the mid-1960s, Fonseca began to carve quasi-architectural stone sculptures that simultaneously evoke ancient ruins, ritual fetishes, and mysterious games. He designed a cement Tower for the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City. In 1971 the Jewish Museum in New York City mounted an exhibition of his work; that same year he began to divide his time between New York and Italy, where he could create large-scale marble sculptures at his studio near Carrara. Fonseca represented Uruguay in the 1990 Venice Biennale. He died in Italy in 1997.

See alsoArt: The Twentieth Century .

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Bazzano Nelson, Florencia. "Joaquín Torres-García and the Tradition of Constructive Art." In Latin American Artists of the Twentieth Century, edited by Waldo Rasmussen et al. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1993.

De Torres, Cecilia Buzio. "Gonzalo Fonseca." In El Taller Torres-García: The School of the South and Its Legacy, edited by Mari Carmen Ramírez. Austin, TX: Archer M. Huntington Art Gallery, 1992.

Fonseca, Gonzalo. Gonzalo Fonseca. Montevideo: Ministerio de Educación y Cultura, Museo Nacional de Artes Plásticas y Visuales, 1990.

Ramírez, Mari Carmen. "Re-Positioning the South: The Legacy of El Taller Torres-García in Contemporary Latin American Art." In El Taller Torres-García: The School of the South and Its Legacy, edited by Mari Carmen Ramírez. Austin, TX: Archer M. Huntington Art Gallery, 1992.

                                       Joseph R. Wolin

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