Giorgio Bortoli was born in Venice, Italy, the city in which he
currently lives and works. His artistic tendencies originate from
the family, his paternal grandfather was a painter and a sculptor
and was also a great connoisseur in music, which he played and composed.
An extremely talented man who set up a very important firm of lighting
system with his brothers.
He actually invented, more than fifty hears ago, the float that
generates fantastic illumi-nation on the famous night of the Redentore.
This personality, has without doubt, influenced the yoùng
Bortoli together with master Murer to whom he became acquainted
during his holidays in the mountains. Subsequently, following professor
Borsato's precious advice, he enters into the heart of artistic
In 1984 his work o Explosivo visus" is selected in the sixty-nineth
group exhibition held by Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa. The following
year, his work entitled, omaris pisceso is selected in the seventieth
edition of the graup Exhibition.
During the same year, he offers Pope Giovanni the li, one of his
créations called "no alla seconda crocefissione",
"no to the second cruci-fixion", which is now in the Vatican
Museums in Rome;
The year after, his work entitled Onda "Waveo finds temporary
placing in the magica] scenery of the Canal Grande in Venice, just
opposite the hotel Europa e Regina.This is a rare and happy example
of sculptural introduction in the delicateVenetian urban web.
From this first introduction to the venetian environment, Mr. Bortoli's
artistic career beco-mes studded with orders and patronage which
has kept him busy in his own city and abroad, in particular in Munich
where ha has made a name for himself.
In 1988 with the patronage of the locai Culture Council in Venice,
he, created the work entitled Venezia Immaginaria, "Imaginary
Veniceo, for the Save Venice International Association, presently
exhibited in NewYork.
In 1989 Mr. Bortoli completed a stylized bron-ze sculpture with
giacomettian undertones which was placed in the La Scala Theatre
in Milan, by the ex artistic director of La Fenice Theatre, master
Tangucci. With the cooperation of the Seguso Fornace, he sculpted
a series of "Phoenixes" in bronze and glass for la Fenice
Theatre. In addition, he finished a series of works commemorating
St. Mark's year in Venice, some of which were dedicated to the Cardinal
Patriarch Marco Cè.
(n 1995 the artist organized musical and artistic performances for
the Venice International Film Festival, drawn upon freudian philosophy.
creates "New Lion of Veniceo (Nuovo leone di Venezia) for
the President of the Film Festival Gillo Pontecorvo, in occasion
of the traditional prize offered by AVAL.In
1996 the Venice International Film Festival Committee, requested
Mr. Bortoli, to organize a series of events for that occasion:
The same year he created the International Prize "a Life
for Music" (una vita per la musica) for the Arthur Rubinstein
Foundation, awar-ded to the american violinist Isaac Stern.
For the Veneto Region, he completed the "going Lions"
(leoni andanti) in oxidised green bronze which are a second version,
in modern style, of the venetian lion. Orders from the industrial
world are also numerous, the works are specifically devised to
represent the professional history of some important companies,
which choose to bind their name to an exclusive work. There has
been Libco In Milan, secondly San Benedetto minerai water offered
a trophy for sportive and cultural initiatives and finally a series
of bronzes for Nuova Pansae Spa. Recently, the artist and his
brother are involved in an ambitious and impressive project ori
macrodimension, in collaboration with Fincantieri in Marghera
and sponsored by Illnor Spa.
His desire to acquire experience, other than that of working ori
inside environments, leads the scupltor to widen his prospects.The
result is comparable to architecture, due to the remarkable size
and the constructing materials such as steel. Furthermore, he
has an aesthetic eye and pays attention to elegant coverings made
in Murano glass that emphasize the preciausness of the work. This
macrosculpture (12 metres) which Mr. Bortoli is stili working
on, was born with the idea to theoretically connect two cities
surroun-ded by water in one unique sculpture. Venice, with its
Beli Tower and NewYork with its Metropolitan Life Tower.
The main structure is in steel (supplied by the Hydroamachines
in Marghera) and the external covering is THE MATERIALS constituted
by extremely particular tiles, each one different, made of reeycled
glass.The entire work will be decorated with an angel (one metre
high) in gold dust made by master Giorgio Giuman and by four clocks
which will teli the time in Venice and in New York. The work that
is goirrg to be exhibited in the United States has been eneouraged
by Massimo Cacciari, the Mayor of Venice, who has underlined the
elective affinity between the two cities rarely taken into consideration.
Mr. Bortoli's plastic creations have covered many aspects of seulptoral
activity; he has in fact considered many kinds of materials in order
to find the way of representing his aims. A variegated activity
because of the materials and topics his uses, which range from works
of intimist sentiment like the statue donated to the Pope. This
represents Christ oUtstretched to the sky with a tiny crass made
of cartridges from the World War, that the artist picked-up himself,
on the pastures of Asiago to symbolize hope and peace in the world.
The filiform metal "Madonna's", or again, "The face
of Christ" assigned to San Rocco' church in Venice, up to the
crea-tions that reveal a polemic object, a warning addressed to
a society that is letting a fragile city like Venice, corrode. So,
creations are born to "save Venice", concrete works that
bring us back to an unbearable reality that comes from the artist's
sensitiveness and reflects a contrasted tie with the city, always
present in his works, an addressee of sorrowful worry and artistic
inspiration. The work named Onda, "Wave" is an example;
it is exposed in front of hotel Europa e Regina ori the Canal Grande
and it proves application for its contents an its technique. It
is a sculpture, to perpetually remind us of the flood in 1966 and
wants to be an alarm to a foolish man-agement of the city and in
particular against motion wave.
Perocco describes the sea wave as a representation of danger that
comes from sea, along with inspiration for an original creation:"
It is opposite his workshop, out doors, out-stretched to the sky,
sinuous and seduc-tive, more than three metres high, in zinc iron,
with developing shapes casca-ding over, a harmonious rhythm that
also has the overbearing strength and elegance of the sea tide".
A cali to observe nature is also present in his work Principio e
declino "Beginning and decline", sponsorized by the local
Culture Council that expresses the uncertain fate of Venice in balance
bet-ween two contrasting destinies, one that could reveal a favourable
means, the other on the contrary a slow decline due to continuous
and ceaseless deterioration.
A sort of paysage moralisè, in contemporary style, that lets
the spectator choose the way to go about it.
In 1995 one of Giorgio Bortoli's work was a protagonist of a cam-paign
against drugs. The schools in Venice took great interest in it.
The sculpture created by Mr. Bortoli was a skull in aluminium fusion
with many syringes stuck in it. This image was also reproduced on
postcards and posters that were distributed around the city. In
spite of its strong image, it definitely went straight to the point
and was in fact very successful.
An interesting aspect of Giorgio Bortoli's work is the choice
of the materials, the usage of iron and bronze widely employed
in tradi-tional craftsmanship, a category which is nowadays dying
out but gives him the opportunity to get closer to his aim of
moulding the material, to achieve shapes that are always different:
sometimes representing a face (the proud and impenetrable one
of Maria Callas), sometimes tracing the essential lines of the
human figure that stretches towards the sky, like his works of
giaco-mettian inspiration, one of which is the already mentioned
Paganini. This antique technique is cleverly mastered by the sculptor
in ali of its phases, from the pla-ster to the superficial patina.
Thanks to its extreme plasticity it allows the figure to be exceedingly
lengthened in an impulse which is pure tension. Bronze also been
an excellent intermediary for his works of more religious inspiration,
to present both mystery and faith. The Madonna's delicate features,
remind us of the traditional and devo-tional moment through modern
The stylised shape of the work entitled "Madonna in prayer"
is par-ticular because it is made of welded bronze rods, previously
shaped. The materials has also undergone an oxidisation process
that gua-rantees a perfect preservation, even in unfavourable
weather condi-tions typical of the lagoon area.
Bortoli has also introduced natural elements in his creations, a
collection of raw materials: stones, wire, shells, pieces of wood
sun-dryed that the artist picks up while he walks on the Lido beach,
anything that strikes his fantasy and in which he can see a shape,
a poetic understanding. The artist's creativity is furthermore expressed
through assemblages, irons and surpluses from the last World War
that give life to works "against wars" At the end of the
80's, his works show concrete signs of the past not only because
of the materials he uses, like glass of the local workmanship but
also by the introduction of "relics" belonging to venetian
history, eloquent evidence of a renowned past that can't be forgotten.
Mr. Bortoli has created a work entitled Campanile di San Marco,
St. Mark's Beli Tower, the conventional image of the Beli Tower
that fell down a hundred years ago. This aspect concern the series
of Phoenixes made in Murano glass and first quality gold (at Seguso-Viro's
furnace) and other in bronze which rest, but we could nearly say
rise, on a base of wood found the day after the fire that ruined
La Fenice Theatre.
The research of the raw material that is an inexhaustible source
of inspiration, together with the study of its potentiality, are
constant in the artist works of the venetian sculptor. It drives
him to work in factories, modern forge, where industrial experimentation
finds affinity of purpose with art. Steel, is the last logical development
of his artistic course that starts from wood and lands on macrodimension
with the aim of comparing itself with the external environment and
This care in the choice of the materials for the work, presumes
a constant control by the artist of ali the working phases, starting
from the planning up to the final realisation, this ali in a traditional
artisan way that sees the artìst as inventor and "modeller"
of the sculpture, thanks to a wise technical valuation. This is
the reason why, the atelier is of fundamental importance, it is
a refuge that permits withdrawal from the world, to refiect, to
invest and finally create. Giorgio Bortoli's workshop is on the
Lido of Venice, on that strip of land between lagoon and sea, so
populated by holidaymakers in the summertime and so desert in the
winter which makes it so picturesque.
Bortoli works undisturbed in a camouflaged spot in the vegetation,
the waves and clouds as raw material and light effects, caused
by the sun, in the daytime. It is without doubt an inspiring workshop,
the planning phase takes piace inside an armoured military craft
which has been adapted and entirely lined with wood.
artist's idea, was to create a "sculpture in a sculpture"
because he actually carries out here, the sketches of his works
while the construction itself happens outside, just a few metres
from the venetian lagoon.
COUNCIL OF VENETO
biography of the artist Giorgio Bortoli
Bortoli was born in Venice, where he lives and works. His artistic
training has its origins in the family, his paternal grandfather
was indeed a painter and sculptor.
From a young age, during a stay in the mountains, he met the artist
Augusto Murer that inspired and then builds on the suggestions
of Professor Renato Borsata that will help you get to the heart
of artistic activity.
Start exposing the Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa in Venice in
1985 and offers its creation entitled "No to the second crucifixion"
to Pope John Paul II, located now in the Vatican Museums.
In those years, he began to create large sculptures that will
be included in the delicate fabric of the city of Venice and from
here the artistic path will be full of commissions and sponsorship
that will see him engaged in his hometown and abroad, from "Paganini"
in bronze for the Teatro alla Scala (1989), carrying out, in collaboration
with the Glass Seguso, cli a series of "Phoenician"
for the Teatro La Fenice (1995), the international prize "A
life for music" commissioned by the Foundation Arthur Rubinstein
(1996 ), the "Lions Andantes" created for the region
Veneto, with structures designed to represent the professional
history of some major private companies.
Then engages with projects macrodimensions with the use of construction
materials such as steel, but with an aesthetic that focuses on
elegance of Murano glass coatings. And 'this periorlo the macroscultura
shaped bell tower "Venice - New York" (2000), steel,
glass and fragments of the original steeple collapsed in 1902
inspired by the idea of ??combining in a single work the two cities
'water city united, according to the artist, a great affinity.
Since 2011 the artist is present with the work "Compassion"
in the Permanent Collection of the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
The creations of plastic Bortoli have touched the various aspects
of the sculpture, the artist was confronted with different materials
in order to better represent their intent. There are several works
of religious inspiration: the statuette for Pope John Paul II,
the "Christ", the "Madonna" to '"Angel",
to the creations made with the intent to "save Venice",
of which the sculpture "Wave" and "Principle and
decline" represents the highest example.
search of raw materials as a source of inspiration and I study
the potential of the material is a constant of the artistic work
of the Venetian sculptor: his creativity is expressed through
the use of more traditional iron, bronze and glass of local manufacture,
but also through assemblages of natural elements such as rocks,
wire, shells and wooden blocks.
study of Bortoli is on the Venice Lido.
THE PRESIDENT OF THE REGIONAL COUNCIL OF VENETO
July 23, 2012
oil on cloth, cm 52 xes 37, end '800 beginning '900; Bortoli Luigi
grandfather of George;
oil on cloth,cm
28 x 22, end
'800 beginning '900; Bortoli Luigi grandfather of George;
Giorgio in primary school
Giorgio con la sua "bici-scultura"
all'età di dieci anni
"Onde" del 1985 - Iron zinc 200
cm x 70 cm
"Paganini" del 1986 - Bronze
60 cm x 20 cm
"Maria Callas" del 1997 - Bronze
30 cm x 12 cm
"L'Angelo" del 2000
- Bronze 130 cm x 25 cm
"Venice New York" del 2000 - Stainless steel and glass
12 mt x 1,50 mt