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Riccardo Licata was born in Turin on December 20, 1929. After a brief period in Paris, his family moved to Rome where he lived from 1935 to 1945. In 1946 he moved with his mother to Venice. In 1947, after seeing some of his drawings, Giuseppe Mazzariol convinces him to enroll in the Art School where he is a student of Luciano Gasperi and Mario De Luigi. The architect Antonio Salvatori approaches him to the artistic culture of Bauhaus, while the painter Romualdo Scarpa starts him to the art of mosaic in an experience that will prove decisive for his future. In 1948 he repeatedly visited the International Biennial of Venice, the first after the Liberation, where "discovers" the collection of Peggy Guggenheim (in particular the works of Jackson Pollock) and knows the artists of the Fronte Nuovo delle Arti (Santomaso, Birolli, Pizzinato, Vedova, Guttuso, Turcato, Viani etc.), animators of the debate on the renewal of Italian art after the war. Assiduously attends concerts at the Teatro La Fenice and the Festival of Contemporary Music of the Venice Biennale. With the painters Ennio Finzi, Tancredi, Bruno Blenner and the sculptor Giorgio Zennaro, constitutes in 1949 a group of young artists of abstract tendency. It begins to delineate his "graphic writing - pictorial" inspired by music. In 1950 he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice where he followed the courses of painting by Bruno Saetti and participates in the Collective Exhibition of the Foundation Bevilacqua La Masa in whose rooms, the following year, set up his first solo exhibition. The most important Venetian art critics of the time - Giuseppe Mazzariol, Giuseppe Marchiori, Umbro Apollonio, Silvio Branzi, Berto Morucchio and Toni Toniato - begin to be interested in his work. It is present at the Venice Biennale in 1952 with a large mosaic. In 1953 he participated in the Milan Triennale and won the First Prize for engraving at the Youth Biennale in Gorizia. The following year, 1954, still exhibits at the Venice Biennale. Meet Gino Severini. In 1955 he participated in the Biennial of San Paulo in Brazil and won the First Prize for painting at the Youth Biennial of Gorizia. In 1956 isinvited to the Quadrennial in Rome, exhibited with a solo exhibition of engravings at the Venice Biennale and won the First Prize of the Foundation Bevilacqua La Masa. The following year he got a scholarship and moved to Paris as an assistant to Gino Severini to the chair of mosaic. From 1957 he lived in Paris (with frequent and regular stays in Venice where he has always kept a studio house) and began to attend assiduously the ateliers of Stanley Hayter, Johnny Friedlaender and Henri Goetz, as well as artists and critics such as Matta, Brauner, Huntertwasser, Lebel, Jouffroy and the Italians Tancredi and Mondino. In 1961 he married Maria Battistella, a singer researcher of ancient folk ballads and Renaissance, which will have, in 1962, his son John. In 1962 the School of Mosaic is integrated within the Academy of Fine Arts in Paris where Licata is still teaching, while since 1970 he teaches experimental engraving techniques at the International School of Graphics in Venice. In 1963 he won the Michetti Prize and in 1975 the First Prize at the Review of Graphics in Forlì. Licata has subsequently participated in the Venice Biennale in 1964, 1970 and 1972, the Rome Quadrennial, the Biennial of Paris, Alexandria, San Paulo in Brazil, and the most important international biennials of graphics (Ljubljana, Tokyo, Mulhouse, Krakow, Reikiavik, Berlin, etc..). His personal exhibitions have been set up in major Italian cities and in Paris, Helsinki, San Paulo of Brazil, London, Dublin, Malmoe, Mulhouse, Lille, Poitiers, Auxerre, Rouen, Barcelona, Brussels, Nice, Amsterdam, Grenoble, Taipei, Ghent, Stockholm, Monaco, etc.. Particularly significant is the great traveling exhibition in Spain in 1990, curated by Enzo Di Martino, sponsored by the Caja de Ahorros de Asturias, and exhibited in a dozen cities such as Oviedo, Gijon, Leon, Valencia, Valladolid, Malaga, Granada etc.. He has created large mosaics in public spaces in Italian and French cities such as Genoa (Palace of Public Works), Bourgoin Jailleu, Sault les Rethel, Lille (University), Perpignan, Monza, Dozza (fresco), Reggio Emilia (Chamber of Labor), etc.. In the theatrical field he has designed the scenes and costumes of "Medea" by Euripides (1978 - Treviso, Teatro Comunale) and the ballet "Ichspaltung" by Giuseppe Marotta (1980 - Venice, Teatro Goldoni). His works are found in the Museums of Modern Art of Venice, Milan, Mulhouse, Alexandria, Rome, Turin, Warsaw, San Paulo of Brazil, Vienna, New York, Stockholm, Florence, Stuttgart, etc.. An exhaustive documentation of Riccardo Licata's activity is preserved in the Historical Archives of the Contemporary Arts of the Biennale di Venezia. He died in Venice on February 19, 2014.Read more Close