Artist's Notes
by Betty Danon

We are in the Summer of 1969 and the first man is landing on the moon. I work without rest, I can hardly see the astronauts on TV. A very vivid interest in Jungian psychology and its symbols brings me to express myself through two geometric forms, the circle and the square: I am in search of a mandala, and the result is a series of colored collages, of multiple eclipses, of orbiting planets around the yin&yang symbols.

These first collage pieces will be incidentally seen by a gallerist and a few months later, they will be exhibited as SPATIAL ART. That was just the beginning. From then on I would never stop working and learning.

The initial geometric figures tend to grow thinner and thinner in time, until from the circle only the center remains and from the square only the edge, so that they are reduced to dot and line (PUNTO-LINEA), two primary elements that are going to adopt me. I enjoy reducing everything to punto-linea, mostly proper names, until those actually become almost identical, exactly the way their compounding matter is reducible to few a essential elements.

The search goes on. In 1973 I become strongly attracted by musical staves and the inevitable rigidity of its lines that recall the immutable constants of life itself. I place a pack of staves on my desk where it will remain for seven months, and one day, almost in trance, I conceive my first simulated score. From then on the staves will be an ideal support for my early scores. And so I start developing a personal visual poetic meta-language. Upon the severe and cruel rigidity of the staves I impress my writing, initially made of punto-linea, which becomes more and more gestural and free in time. The Sound will become the real protagonist in my work, simply on the basis of its absence.

Later the stiffness of the staves vanishes, I can transform, break, distort them and use their complicity to "capture" the hidden sounds of things. Wherever I decide to use them there is a sound, a rhythm, a world to uncover -- of a city, a tree, a green plant, a plain object, etc. Each time those must yield a bit of their mystery, their essence, through a sound to be perceived, yet certainly not with the ear.

In the end I discover almost by chance "the wave and particle" theory described in quantum physics. These two infinitesimal components of the atom get transformed, without an apparent logic, one into the other: as in some pages of my "PUNTO-LINEA" book where the punto becomes an undulated linea and the undulated linea gets transformed in punto, each time with a new logic. This discovery fills me with joy: so, in the arch of the years the primary circle and square follow a schedule from macro to micro world: first reduced to punto-linea, and then to something much much smaller, in contrast with the boundless space often suggested in the background.

Testo Italiano (Text in Italian)

Texte Français (Text in French)

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Copyright © 1987 and 2000 by Betty Danon

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