From Continent to Continent

Mario Merz

Magazzino Italian Art

Magazzino Italian Art
Cold Spring, United States

Mario Merz’s work is particularly engaged in architectural images and of place, dwelling, and construction. The artist began constructing igloos in 1968. For Merz, impermanent structure that can be shifted from place to place. The form of the igloo was “the ideal organic shape, both a world and a small house, a synthesis, a complex image.” The hemispherical shape was central to the artist’s work. Made of disconnected materials assembled with clamps, the igloo represents the artist’s view of himself as a nomad who always seeks new creative energy. The title of the artwork evokes the circularity of travel that from covers the surface of the Earth. Spelled out in neon tubing, the words of the title correspond in space to the four cardinal directions. The dark slate is a material that has been used in construction since ancient times. Its visual and material properties contrast with the neon, often used by the artist to “activate” the energy of the work of art.


  • Title: From Continent to Continent
  • Creator: Mario Merz
  • Creator Lifespan: (1925 – 2003)
  • Creator Nationality: Italian
  • Date Created: 1993
  • Physical Dimensions: h 170.2, w 304.8, d 304.8 cm
  • Rights: Courtesy Magazzino Italian Art Foundation
  • Medium: Slate, neon, and metal structure

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