Monza, 1921 – Bresso, 1972
Roberto Gaetano Crippa was born in Monza in 1921. After graduating in 1947, the same year he exhibits at the Bergamini Gallery in Milan with his first solo exhibition, and already the following year he participates in the Milan Triennale and in the Venice Biennale. The first works in the figurative style still appear to be influenced by the post-Cubist post-war manner. Crippa’s attendence to these manifestations of contemporary art follow one another intensely and constantly, so that from 1948 to 1960 he exhibits in four Triennials of Milan and in 1960 he wins the XIII edition and he will be invited to six editions of the Venice Biennale.
From the beginning of his career, also thanks to a stay in New York, Crippa has a chance to become known overseas. He exhibits annually at Alexader Jolas gallery and meets Brauer, Ernst, Lam and Matta. In 1951 Crippa signs the third manifesto of Spatialism by Lucio Fontana. The artworks of this period are characterized by the signic gesture: ellipses and spirals that release energy (Spirals).
This is followed by the period defined by him of Collages (from ‘56) and the one called Metaphysics of materials. Since the mid-50s, the artist creates his famous Totem, hominids with fantastic primordial shapes.
The urge to experiment and find new and very personal forms of expression is and will be a constant feature of Roberto Crippa, exuberant, lively, curious about the world, energetic and never tired of trying new emotions and new experiences, in art as in flight (pilot of the aviation and enthusiast aerobatics).