The Sixties represent the time of Antonio Corbo’ beginnings, the crucial moment of his consecration to the painting; in the light of a modern consideration this non-academic training allowed him to approach the creativity in a free and disillusioned way, perhaps distant from those forced academic ones concerning particular historical-artistic post-avant-gardes. The artist, especially in the first period of his activity, researched varied figurative types, in an attempt to intercept typologies of issues close to the typical expressive-emotional stadium that characterizes his work, joining them up with signs and with elements recognizable through the repeated gesture in his painting’s building form. These are the reasons that push Corbo, at first, to the identification of issues related to the historical-political and social sphere. The image as a form of denunciation and a removal from a traditionalist view of beauty – that is revealed by a boldness of signs and colors – bind with evidence to the expressionist production and, specifically, to the German graphic tradition with direct references to Emil Nolde and Käthe Kollwitz. The works of this period represent an approach of Corbo to the new styling of Social Realism with veiled references to the iconographic systems of a more traditional matrix. The emotional involvement of the artist is clearly evident in all the works of this period: the attention to the social policy was, as always, a artistic peculiarity of Corbo and it sustains (or rather, overlaps) his own private life. Since the beginning of the Sixties, Antonio Corbo addressed great attention to the political turmoil of his time with active and direct participation, as evidenced by the efforts conducted within the union sphere. The tangible proof of it comes from the production of graphic works and posters – for congresses, conferences and anniversaries – linked to the world of work that faces its highest expression in the course of the Eighties. These aspects will mark his artistic career in a sharp way, as evidenced in a large part of his paintings. The attention given to the Last, the condition of man as “social animal” and the psychological introspection, guide the artist in the elaboration of works clearly based on these reflections whose pictorial transposition always follows new trends: the social commitment of Corbo and his natural predisposition in solving the problems specific to these spheres, seems to trace the commitment of a research turned to the construction of a defined and recognizable artistic identity. Passion and reality, that’s what defines the painting of Antonio Corbo of this period: a painting of denunciation, close to the language of the people, that can be translate because driven by ideals and feelings common to the artist and to his audience. The emotional bond of Corbo to his painting seems to tend to a formal evolution, also iconographic, that follows the logic of his own personal and intimate reflection. The religious sphere – cross-cutting theme in all the years of his artistic production – plays a decisive role, although not ostentatious or pedantic, while the graphic production, started enthusiastically in the previous decade, follows a natural evolution in the successive years, expanding to new issues that keep on being special for the artist even in the future. Sure enough in Corbo’ s art the figurative representations travel on the same path of the punctual study on the landscape, the initiating reflections and the technical experiments that can lead to results deliberately diversified in the perception of the space but united, for essence, in the analysis of a single element capable of defining the structure: the light. The symbiotic relationship of Corbo with Nature – in all its manifestations – just starts off with the works of this period and it is characterized by the author’s will to overcome the realistic and celebratory effects, focusing the studies and the weightings on the vibrant actions into the form definition. From this attitude to life, very different scenarios and environments come alive, often characterized by a spontaneous transposition of the naturalistic elements, by the essence of compositional structures and by the reduced time during the typical, albeit bitter, construction-execution of the abstract poetic.
Preghiera della sera