It is good attitude to doubt rules.
Creativity doesn't follow rules.

Gaetano Pesce

Curatorial Alchemy

Our paths first crossed, unknown until many years later, at an intimate yet bustling wedding reception in a south Chicago apartment. This was probably 30 years ago, perhaps even the same year a new gallery, Torno Wright, opened at the end of my street to a fanfare of Eames, heralding new changes to come. Criss-crossing breezes of chance encounters, meandering spirits, hazy focus of time and space, of enthusiasm and knowledge sought, now united again in the same city.

That same serendipity, prompting impulse and discovery, guided welcome reward in the crucible of that great industrial city, still littered with the artefacts of the American mid-century. It was within this uneven yet fertile terrain, hidden slightly below surface, that Patrick’s intuitive talent—honed first as photographer then embellished as artist—would treasure the valuable neglected as passionate collector, and then as the inspirational dealer that I was to meet again, years later in New York City.

If asked to select one word to describe Patrick, I would resist and pick two. The first would be curiosity—a fundamental essential, to stimulate inquiry and rigour in all things, both great and small, of any era or region, type or surface. Even the most fleeting survey of this selection for sale is a celebration of innovation and of inspiration—an unerring eye for the unusually exceptional, or perhaps the exceptionally unusual. The chances are, that these are indeed discoveries that you have not yet realized that you needed to make.

Mentor, would be my second word. If artefacts and objects articulate visual, cultural and historic language, then the fluency of skillful mentorship—to guide, nurture, describe and explain—releases the eloquence of murmuring histories. In this capacity Patrick is that most earnest and sincere of excellent narrators. If ever I had friends, clients or colleagues visiting New York looking for unusual inspiration, there was always the certainty that Patrick’s gallery would offer them a glimpse of the hitherto unseen or the unusually seductive, always with the reassurance of the most fascinating story waiting to be told.

Mentorship and curiosity, when balanced in equal measure, reveal the precious alchemy of a curator. And it is the duty of the mature curator to discern and detect, to cultivate change, and from there to pioneer, and to share. Innovation is never static, and the Present is already the Future. Fresh dialogs evolve, energies to be nurtured, opportunities to be guided. Renewed and re-orientated, Patrick now faces fully forward—as benefactor, interlocutor and mentor to a new, inquisitive generation of talented creators, and the quest for discovery rejuvenates.

— Simon Andrews
andrewsartadvisory.com

Gaetano Pesce b. 1939

Gaetano Pesce is one of the most progressive and visionary designers of the 20th century, building a diverse and avant-garde body of work from principles of anti-rationalism, a concern for the individual and the “human touch,” and an experimental approach to materials and means of production.

Pesce was born in 1939 in La Spezia, Italy and grew up between Florence and Padua. His father, a naval officer, died in WWII, leaving his mother to raise him and his brother alone, resulting in a difficult childhood. From a young age, Pesce exhibited a rebellious spirit, joining Gruppo N, a radical artist collective when he was still a teenager. In 1959, Pesce enrolled at the University of Venice to study architecture, because he considered it to be the most complex and challenging of the arts. He found the curriculum tedious and stifling with its insistence on historicism and the hyper-rationalist, mechanical, and abstracted ideals of modernist architecture, which he thought disregarded the individual and attempted to standardize the human spirit. He found his suspicions of modernism confirmed when he visited Dessau, Germany, the birthplace of the Bauhaus, to find that the first Bauhaus building, where Paul Klee and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe taught, had been turned into a coal room.

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Auction Results Gaetano Pesce

GAETANO PESCE, Sansone table | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Sansone table

estimate: $30,000–40,000
result: $36,000
GAETANO PESCE, set of lamps from Il Cestello, Florence | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

set of lamps from Il Cestello, Florence

estimate: $30,000–40,000
result: $36,000
GAETANO PESCE, conference table for the American Ballet Theatre | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

conference table for the American Ballet Theatre

estimate: $30,000–40,000
result: $33,800
GAETANO PESCE, Dalila chair | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Dalila chair

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $25,200
GAETANO PESCE, Golgotha chair | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Golgotha chair

estimate: $20,000–30,000
result: $25,000
GAETANO PESCE, Golgotha chair | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Golgotha chair

estimate: $20,000–30,000
result: $23,750
GAETANO PESCE, prototype dining table | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

prototype dining table

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $18,750
GAETANO PESCE, Nobody's Perfect tables, set of two | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Nobody's Perfect tables, set of two

estimate: $1,000–1,500
result: $16,250
GAETANO PESCE, Dalila 3 armchair | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Dalila 3 armchair

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $16,250
GAETANO PESCE, Nobody's Perfect cabinet | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Nobody's Perfect cabinet

estimate: $15,000–20,000
result: $12,500
GAETANO PESCE, UP3 chair | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

UP3 chair

estimate: $3,000–5,000
result: $11,400
GAETANO PESCE, ceiling light | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

ceiling light

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $11,250
GAETANO PESCE, conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $10,200
GAETANO PESCE, vase | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

vase

estimate: $1,500–2,000
result: $10,000
GAETANO PESCE, Sansone II | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Sansone II

estimate: $9,000–12,000
result: $9,440
GAETANO PESCE, set of lamps from Il Cestello, Florence | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

set of lamps from Il Cestello, Florence

estimate: $5,000–7,000
result: $9,375
GAETANO PESCE, Osso lamp | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Osso lamp

estimate: $10,000–15,000
result: $8,890
GAETANO PESCE, Crosby child's chairs, set of three | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Crosby child's chairs, set of three

estimate: $2,000–3,000
result: $8,750
GAETANO PESCE, Sansone II coffee table | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Sansone II coffee table

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $8,750
GAETANO PESCE, 543 Broadway chairs, set of six | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

543 Broadway chairs, set of six

estimate: $2,000–3,000
result: $8,750
GAETANO PESCE, conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $8,125
GAETANO PESCE, Sansone II dining table | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

Sansone II dining table

estimate: $6,000–8,000
result: $8,125
GAETANO PESCE, conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

conference table from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York

estimate: $4,000–6,000
result: $8,125
GAETANO PESCE, set of twelve 543 Broadway chairs from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York | wright20.com

Gaetano Pesce

set of twelve 543 Broadway chairs from TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York

estimate: $7,000–9,000
result: $7,800