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Ernest Trova

1927 - 2009

Ernest Trova (1927-2009) was an Italian American artist best known for his “Falling Man” series.  Born in Clayton, Missouri, he was influenced by his father who worked as an industrial tool designer and inventor.  Upon his father’s death shortly after Trova’s high school graduation, he found a job as a window dresser for a large department store.  As a self-taught artist, he was inspired by painters Francis Bacon, Jean Dubuffet and Willem DeKooning but was also artistically influenced by the mannequins with which he worked, evident in his oeuvre.

Trova rose to prominence in the art world in the 1960s with his “Falling Man” paintings, prints, and sculptures featuring an armless human figure, which he considered “man at his most imperfect.”  A solo exhibition of his paintings inaugurated the Pace Gallery in New York in 1963, where he continued to exhibit for more than 20 years.

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