Burri observes the destruction made by fire on various materials: wood, iron, plastic. He paints his surfaces in acrylic mixed with glue but uses only two colors : flesh and blood. He leads the combustion to the outskirts of its final phase to get melts, blisters and ashes.
He follows his process with obsession during two decades. He takes the visitor of his exhibitions to react against the horrors of wars when observing his tortured materials. His artistic reputation grows : by luck at the same time other artists had also waived the usual techniques of painting and sculpture : Piero Manzoni, Lucio Fontana, Yves Klein.
In the series of Rosso Plastica, the deep red is damaged by large black oval craters with sharp edges. The blood reinterpreted by Burri anticipates and perhaps inspires Fontana in his quest for the infinite beyond a punctured or lacerated surface. The pustules of a Bianco Plastica, suggestive of a rotting flesh, do not offer a similar incentive.
On October 7 in London, Sotheby's sells Rosso Plastica 5 realized in 1962, 70 x 100 cm, lot 14 estimated £ 4M. Another Rosso Plastica 80 x 100 cm made in the following year with a similar balance between reds and black voids was sold for £ 3.7M including premium by Sotheby's on February 12, 2014.
SOLD for £ 4.7M including premium