Paolo Scheggi, Lamiera policroma (Polychrome metal sheet), 1958, polychrome metal sheet, 70 x 100 cm. Private collection

“The ‘found’ character of the materials is highlighted by the relationship between the work’s metallic elements and the presence of words and symbols. One of the first admirers of Scheggi’s work was the ‘queen’ of the Beat Generation, Fernanda Pivano, who wrote a lengthy analysis of the artist’s imagery in 1963, defining these early works as examples of “New Dada” created by a very young artist who she described as “surprised and eager, as impressionable as wax or, to put it in a more modern way, as 27 DIN or 500 ASA film”. Pivano also recalled that lines from poems by figures such as T. S. Eliot could be seen on the walls of his small studio in Settignano: “And I will show you something different from either / Your shadow at morning striding behind you / Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you / I will show you fear in a handful of dust".

Ilaria Bignotti