h. 43 cm
De Horst, Den Haag
52.093284478433, 4.3573381978699 View on map
For sculptor Annemie Fontana, the sphere is a grateful starting point. In the artist's oeuvre, the sphere returns in all kinds of capacities and versions. The specimen placed in the De Horst park in 1981 is made of marble and has a cross-section of only 43 centimetres. The statue stands on a sturdy pedestal but does not seem insignificant despite its small size.
Compared to her smoothly polished later work, this spherical form has a coarse finish. The surface is full of pits, holes and other irregularities. Actually, it is not a real ball, but a more or less round shape. The strict spherical shape has been deviated from by notches and added shapes. To extract a shape from a lump of raw marble requires not only craftsmanship and a great deal of patience, but also precision. The slightest 'mistake' has disastrous consequences for the purity and roundness of the desired shape.
In Fontana's work, precision and perfection go hand in hand. The sculptor was brought up with a passion for the visual arts. Her father was a painter. Initially, her future seemed to lie in haute couture. Then she trained as a ceramist. From both sectors she picked up skills that later served her well as a sculptor. A sense of style and design and a need for pure craftsmanship are the most important of these.
Initially, Fontana concentrated strongly on form and concept in her 'concrete art'. Later, she also recognised the added value of the personal gesture and of the inner experience. For her, these opposing visions are not incompatible. She establishes connections between constructivist thinking on the one hand and the abstracted representation of recognisable people, animals and things on the other. Loaded themes such as pain, suffering and threat frequently recur.