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Nr. 345; La Tua Ombra; Ton Ombre, 1966

Jim Ede was clearly struck by Italo Valenti’s handling of black and white and by his understanding of ‘balance’, a notion dear to both men. The artist’s process of composition and the friendship with Ede came together in the inspiration for La Tua Ombra. Ede thus described the piece: “His expression of balance, this union of white, of black, is something not to be explained in words; it is entirely a visual creation, known by him as one would know the beauty of sunlight in a wood, or a pebble on the seashore. I obtained one of his larger collage works, an area of white, but what a white, with a shaft of black, falling across it; and somewhere as if by accident, and certainly by magic, a tiny edge of darkness, as of a fallen leaf. It was called ‘The Shadow’. It was for me the impulse of day and night […] A few years later we were having an evening bathe, and the shadow of Italo Valenti’s leg prolonged itself across the sunlit grass. ‘There is your picture’, he said.”

Collage [IV 10]


Paper collage on paper

710 x 1038 mm

About the artist

Valenti was born in Milan. He lived and worked in Italy until 1953, when he made his home in Switzerland. In 1963 he held a joint exhibition with Ben Nicholson, Mark Tobey, Jean Arp and Jules Bissier. He was introduced to Jim Ede by Ben Nicholson. Extensive information about the artist is available at