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Francesco Clemente

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Francesco Clemente

Italian, b. 1952
Francesco Clemente is a contemporary Italian artist known for his dreamlike paintings based on esoteric themes of sexuality and spirituality. Working across oil painting, installation, and watercolor, Clemente’s works are characterized by their formal experimentation with symbols, portraiture, and the human figure. Born on March 23, 1952 in Naples, Italy, he studied architecture at the University of Rome in 1970 before moving to India three years later. While abroad, he collaborated with local craftsman and painters, while also studying Hindu spiritual texts. His experience in traditional papermaking and miniature painting has had a lasting impact on his work. Relocating to New York in 1981, Clemente began collaborating with Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and Allen Ginsberg. Categorized as a Neo-Expressionist during the 1980s, Clemente has largely shunned the restrictive label of movements and styles.

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