A retrospective of the work of Profirio DiDonna (1942-1986) is currently on exhibit at the Danforth Museum of Art, Framingham. The accomplished and mature work belies the artist’s death at a very young age. In many of the large, late career paintings sinuous vertical marks reach upward forming a path vibrating with color to create a kind of mystical, enrapturing experience — meditative, magical, very powerful. John Baker, author of the recently published Porfirio DiDonna: The Shape of Knowing, in commenting on the “undulating corridors” has said, “… the pathways suggest a metaphorical as well as a literal allusion to the existential and historical evolution of [DiDonna’s] work.” Baker suggests the “road” may be seen as “the symbol for [the artist’s] entire studio journey.” Baker further opines that “perhaps movement and change [as seen in these paintings] may be seen as the radiant core of any human search for meaning in life.” This interpretation gives these paintings and the evolutionary drawings in the exhibition a universality that reaches far beyond their beauty. Author John Baker and poet, essayist, and publisher William Corbett will be present at the Danforth on Sunday October 20, 3-5 pm for a reading and book signing of Baker’s book on the artist Porfirio DiDonna.
Curated by John Baker and Nina Nielsen former owners and directors of Nielsen Gallery, Boston
Danforth Museum of Art, Framingham, MA, September 8 – November 3, 2013