Ugo Rondinone was born in Brunnen, Switzerland. He is a mixed-media artist whose work often features bright colours, reminiscent of the signs seen at fun-fairs and carnivals. Such works, however, resist a direct interpretation, and invite the viewer to make a reflective response. Contrast and paradox are a frequent feature of Rondinone’s creations, evident in the 2015 work ‘clouds + mountains + waterfalls’. The boundaries between fiction and reality are often taken as a source of artistic enquiry. Rondinone studied at Vienna’s Hochschule für Angewandte Kunst between 1986 and 1990.
Ugo Rondinone has exhibited widely in Europe and the United States from 1985, and is currently based in Harlem in New York. His outdoor work Seven Magic Mountains was placed in the Nevada Desert in 2016. It consists of brightly-painted towers of rock up to 32 feet high, visible from Interstate 15 near Las Vegas. As a whole, his work explores the impact of nature on human beings. 2013’s Human Nature was installed in Rockefeller Center. It features several large robot-like figures sculpted in stone. Rondinone has been the subject of major exhibitions in Vienna, Spain, Denmark, and New York. There is a distinct air of mystery evident in his art, which encourages meditation and a sense of wonder.