Anna Maria Maiolino
São vinte e um [They are twenty one] (2019)

Fired clay.
Dimensions variable (approx 10 x 10 x 8 cm).
Series of 21 unique works, signed.

Please contact us to purchase or view the series.


About the work 

Opening Anna Maria Maiolino's Whitechapel Gallery exhibition are hundreds of simple shapes made of clay such as balls, rolls and snakes. Slight variations evidence the work of the hand, kneading and shaping the primal material of art – mud. Maiolino’s gestural forms evoke baking, housework and objects of ritual. A sense of fragility permeates the raw clay, as it dehydrates and changes colour.

As a continuation of this exhibited work, Maiolino has generously created 21 unique works for Whitechapel Gallery. Each piece is hand-made in clay by Maiolino and then fired to form 21 individual variants. These works also relate closely to the series Terra Modelada, (Modelled Earth), which is ongoing since 1994. 

The base of each piece is signed by Maiolino and is certified with Anna Maria Maiolino Studio’s archival number.


About the artist

With simple materials like clay, paper and ink Anna Maria Maiolino (b.1942, Italy) constructs a fascinating world rooted in human conditions such as longing, fragility and resistance. Anna Maria Maiolino: Making Love Revolutionary (25 September 2019 - 12 January 2020, is the artist’s first retrospective in the UK, spanning six decades of work. 

Born in Italy during World War II, Maiolino has lived in Brazil since 1960. Her oeuvre gives form to her experience of exile, deprivation and survival under authoritarian and patriarchal regimes.

Her drawings and sculptures constitute a lyrical geometry with marks and voids suggesting an alphabet, maps and topographies; meticulously sewn threads outline a journey of possible spatial configurations. 

Created under the radar of Brazil’s military regime, Maiolino’s politically-charged films and photographs explore repression and hunger. Scarcity of food in her childhood and the social and cultural deficiencies of daily life shape the series Photopoemaction (1976–2000). A mouth opens and closes, swallows an egg and expels threads; bare feet tread carefully among scattered eggs. Black stains and flowing lines may represent alienation; or mutate to become symbols of love and regeneration.

Selected Exhibitions

Anna Maria Maiolino

Whitechapel Gallery editions are generously donated by the artists. All proceeds from the sale of these works directly support our exhibition and education programmes.

As is traditional in editions publishing, prices will rise as an edition starts to sell out. The price shown includes VAT for EU customers and is zero-rated for customers from outside the EU.


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