|La Spezia, Italy|
Alberto Rizzo was born in La Spezia, grew up in Rome, and went on to live in numerous international cities until finally settling in New York City where he worked for the remainder of his life. He began his career touring the world as a professional dancer, working closely with the likes of Maurice Bejard, Hermes Pan and Fred Astaire while crossing paths with everyone from Jean Cocteau to Edith Piaf amongst many others. By the mid 1960’s he switched careers and began making a name for himself in the world for photography, creating iconic and groundbreaking covers for Harper’s Bazaar, which continued throughout the 70’s. During this time he was a regular at Andy Warhol’s factory, taking inspiration from the many artists who were also part of one of the most creative think tanks of the 20th century.
Like his counterparts, he spent most of his evenings at Studio 54 and used his days to evolve as a world-renowned artist. Throughout his long–spanning career, Alberto understood when to move in a new direction and in the eighties he dedicated his time to his fine art projects: the Gel Series, the Paper Cut Out Series, the Shadow Series, and his Abstract Expressionism Series. His work on these collections continued until the end of his life and led to shows at various galleries and institutions around the world, including the Guggenheim Museum.
As Alberto reflected on his artistic journey later in life, he began repurposing some of the work from his 40-year career. These experiments with abstract expressionism involved drawing over his existing art and overlaying it onto other abstract photos. Not afraid to incorporate technology in his work, he also began integrating the use of digital art with the Gel Series and creating abstractions through pixelation. The release that Alberto’s mind experienced as an artist towards the end of his life with these series gives us a glimpse into the extent of his creative and artistic freedom.
To date, his work has been accepted into the Costume Institute of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Victoria & Albert Museum and the J. Paul Getty Museum. He remained a prolific and ever-evolving artist until his death from Leukemia in 2004, leaving an undeniable mark in the world of art and photography.