Golden Section

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  • Condition Report

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  • Provenance

    ARTinD - Golden Section Collection, Italy
    Acquired from the above by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    'I would say that to put architecture in the chain of history, to be able to interpret and understand why we are where we are, is quite crucial.' Rafael Moneo

    'At the Museum of Roman Art, the logic of the forms is very much modern. But in spite of that, the idea of the construction could be related to a historical time.’ Rafael Moneo

    As an architect, Rafael Moneo’s work has been profoundly influenced by history, art and philosophy. Moneo has described his interest in the architectural canon and a historically rooted base of knowledge and solutions from which contemporary architects could draw. ‘’I would say that to put architecture in the chain of history, to be able to interpret and understand why we are where we are, is quite crucial.’’ This artistic interpretation of the Golden Section for Moneo’s carpet design can be attributed to this end. Moneo drew from both the description and illustrations of an extract ‘La Pratica della Perspettiva di Monsignor Daniel Barbaro’, the 16th century treatise on perspective by the architect, writer and patron of Andrea Palladio, Daniele Barbaro. The chosen passage describes, '…a body of 12 surfaces with 5 sides, and from the body of 20 triangular surfaces, originates another body which contains the flat surfaces, sides and angles of the mentioned body. This is because it is formed by 20 pentagons and 30 sides of the dodecahedron, and by 20 triangles with 30 sides of the icosahedron.' The complex and curious 32-sides polyhedron explained and illustrated by Barbaro has as its foundation, the ‘Golden Section’ and thus forms the basis of the pattern making up the carpet design. It is made up of a series of pentagons and triangles, each shape mirrored with a sequence of smaller shapes and varying line density to simulate the perspective of protruding three-dimensional forms, reminiscent of natural salt crystals viewed under a microscope.

    In developing this design to the completion of the finished carpet, the colour of the silk is based on a Franciscan tunic, one of the most recognisable symbols in the art historical canon. The Christian religion has vast significance in the development of western art and architecture through its expansive patronage. The subtle reference to this in the present work harmoniously links the themes of religion and scientific discovery as key factors in the history of art and architecture.

    Moneo’s appreciation for history and art spans further than the architect’s approach and is relevant to the purpose of his commissions. He has designed many museums and cultural spaces, most notably when he converted the Villahermosa palace in Madrid into the museum that houses the Thyssen-Bornemisza collection (1989–92) and designed the Pilar and Joan Miró foundation in Palma de Mallorca (1987–92), the Kursaal Centre in San Sebastián (completed 1999 and winner of the European union prize for contemporary architecture—Mies Van der Rohe award, 2001). Of his approach designing the Museum of Roman Art (completed 1986) he said ‘At the Museum of Roman Art, the logic of the forms is very much modern. But in spite of that, the idea of the construction could be related to a historical time.’

256

Golden Section

hand-knotted carpet
484 x 301 cm (190 1/2 x 118 1/2 in.)
Executed in 2018-19, this work is accompanied by a drawing signed and dated by the artist.

Estimate
£30,000 - 50,000 ♠ †

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Contact Specialist
Tamila Kerimova
Specialist, Head of Day Sale
+ 44 20 7318 4065
tkerimova@phillips.com

20th Century & Contemporary Art Day Sale

London Auction 28 June 2019