Maria Bonomi (1935 - )


    Maria Bonomi arrived in São Paulo from Italy in 1946. She studied painting and drawing with Yolanda Mohalyi and Karl Plattner in 1953 and the following year began her training with one of the fathers of modern printmaking, Livio Abramo. Her first solo exhibition was held in São Paulo in 1956, and in the same year she received a bursary to study at the Pratt Institute Graphics Center (New York). Here she studied under Seong Mot and in parallel studied engraving with Hans Müller and art theory with Meyer Schapiro, at Columbia University. On returning to Brazil in 1959 she attended the metal engraving workshop at the Museu de Arte Moderna in Rio de Janeiro, directed by Johnny Friedlaender. The following year she returned to São Paulo where she founded, with Livio Abramo, the Estúdio Gravura, working as Abramo's assistant until 1964.

    Throughout her career Bonomi exhibited woodcuts at various major exhibitions in Brazil and internationally, including the 1964 Venice Biennale. From the 1970s she began to work in three as well as two dimensions, and went on to produce large relief murals for several public spaces in São Paulo: including the Church of Mãe do Salvador, the Palácio dos Bandeirantes and the Jardim São Paulo metro station. In these murals she explored the lines and textures produced by the gesture of cutting woodblocks for printing: transferring these forms into indented surfaces of concrete and metal. In 1999 Bonomi was awarded a doctorate for her thesis on public art (at the Escola de Comunicações e Artes da Universidade de São Paulo - ECA/USP) and went on to establish a parallel career as a curator, developing several major national and international exhibitions.

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