BIOGRAPHY

Image above: Stefano Ughi with John Cage, New York 1975

Biography

At the end of the 70’s after studying flute at high school with Marlaena Kessik, he graduated in electronic music composition under the guidance of Maestro Angelo Paccagnini at the Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi in Milan; at the time he met Berio, Donatoni, Boulez and Xenakis and experimented with electronic music at the Milan Conservatory, the Centro Nazionale per le Ricerche in Pisa and at IRCAM in Paris.

He composed electronic music works which obtained internationally accolades and was awarded the second prize at the Russolo Pratella international competition and a mention from the Sibelius Akatemie in Helsinki. During these same years he met the collector Giuseppe Panza, a central figure for his cultural and artistic development: thanks to him he met all the leading figures in pop, conceptual, body, minimal and land art. With Giuseppe Panza he travelled America to discover new artists; among others he happened to meet J. Cage with whom he shared his passion for sound and J. Turrell with whom he flew over the Painted Desert and was among the first visitors of the Roden Crater.

He graduated in architecture with a thesis on a modular Concert Hall project with variable acoustics.

A musician and architect by trade he began his professional career by researching and experimenting with phono-absorbent architectural forms; he also spent time working on the active control of sound.

At the same time he began creating his first small interactive pictorial and sculptural installations, in which the artistic expression was influenced by “arte povera” and minimalism. Later on his work increasingly became a synthesis of materials, sound and form. He experimented with the three-dimensional use of different materials such as iron, steel and wood, at times with different layerings and moulding them to the maximum level of curve tension.

He created sound works, in which either the abstract or the figurative elements speak a primitive language; in some works he introduced life size photographed subjects, men, women or details of the human figure, highlighting on the one hand their absolute uniqueness, and on the other by revealing the simultaneity of their existence.

The intense colour was made to slide over the curved surfaces, as if it were following sound waves; in some works these waves actually leave the curved surface of the work thanks to musical tones composed by the artist himself; he retrieves Renaissance colours and assembles them with the materials, creating imposing installations.

Currently he lives and works near the city of Bologna