Rotating First Section No. 3

Arnaldo Pomodoro

b. 1926

In the 1960s Arnaldo Pomodoro became preoccupied with the advance of technology, developing the innovative notion of ‘negative spatiality’, whereby a void became a sculptural form. He explored these themes via his main motifs of the free-standing column, disc–rotor, cube and sphere. In 1963 he executed the first of his Sphere series, which became a recurrent metaphor for the changing status of the world. Underneath the gleaming skin of the bronze lies a regulating machinery of cogs and gears, which Pomodoro calls ‘sign systems’, akin to the complex interlocking systems of language or of organic bodies. The sphere not only functions as a geometric shape and analogue of a living body or mineral form, but also suggests the globe of the earth with its land masses and desiccated ocean beds. Pomodoro invites the viewer to circle the globe, conveying a sense of uninterrupted rotational movement imitating the orbit of planets. The scratched surfaces and expressive eroded quality of his work, which was often exhibited out of doors, shows the influence of Art Informel (a French term describing a swathe of approaches to abstract painting in the 1940s and 1950s that had in common an improvisatory methodology and highly gestural technique). Arnaldo Pomodoro wrote: ‘The ideal of every true sculptor is to see his works placed in the open air, among the people and the houses and the everyday streets. This way it can belong to everybody.’ 

Jeddah Sculpture Museum
Material / Dimensions
Foundry brass / 150cm diameter
Natural World
Sculpture Date
Audio description
Additional images
Artist Biography

Arnaldo Pomodoro was born in Morciano di Romagna, Italy in 1926. From the mid­ 1940s until 1957 Pomodoro served as a consultant for the restoration of public buildings in Pesaro, advising on the restoration of buildings after World War II, while also studying stage design and working as a goldsmith with his brother Giò Pomodoro. In 1961 he joined the group Continuità and he now lives and works in Milan.

His brother is Giò Pomodoro who also has sculptures in Jeddah.