Roberto Merelli was born in Venice in 1936.
He has exhibited in numerous exhibitions both individually and collectively both at home and abroad. Among his many achievments and awards, one of the happiest is the invitation to exhibit at the 1968 biennale for the “figurative arts”. He attended the school of nude drawing at the accademia of Venice.
“ We can find in Roberto Merelli’s work that same restless and frenetic skill than can be noted in the eighteenth century “ gestuali ” artists such as Magnasco and Francesco Guardi. The hand moves rapidly – the brush follows gracefullly. A picture is born – a sequence of quivering flashes and freely flowing lines. However, he is not the acquired result of learning a technique, it is more like a physical or biological response. In this sense, his own hallmart may be defined: belonging both to yesterday and today. It trancends time, it brings to mind a swordsman tracing arabesques in the air with his rapier.
Merelli is Venitian: He paints Venitian scenes.
For him, the city is made up of light and colour : his strokes are the vectors of this partnership. In rapid flashes he synthetizes the features of the Gran Canal or Piazza San Marco. What remains, an atmosphere of overall movement, space and reflect high.
And what subject could lend itself move to this treatment than this godess rising from the sea? Merelli knows this, and the phinges into the achievment of this painting with a joy that is also pleasure, both spontaneous and intoxicating. And as an alternative theme, there are his horses. Here too we find movement, always movement.
The artist captures his horses in a rushing intensity, through rythmic cadences which are inherent to the animal’s very essence, nostrils aquives, the name driven by the wind, the legs galloping. Such a way of painting, it must be said, carries its own risks, one puts one’s trust in the impression, rather like some eighteenth century music.It is improvisation that drives the mind and hand of the artist. Perfect passages can emerge, but at other times they can be precarious or incomplete. Obviously, it is the admiror into must choose.
The gift of grace arrives when one least expects it. Sometimes Merelli feels this gift escaping him, but at other times he manages to grasp it splendidly. Some paintings reach the exact point of maturity – nothing could be added. The air moves freely, the light sparkles and the colours merge effortlessly. There is a sensation of great freedom, the freedom that does not follow fashions, and to be always fresh, spontaneous and faithful to ones’sown self.
I need a gift, that we too can gather, reaching out with our hands.
The documentation concerning the artistic activity of Roberto Merelli is conserved in the “Archivio Storico delle Arti Contemporanee della Biennale” of Venice.