Sérgio de Camargo was a Brazilian sculptor, born in Rio de Janeiro in 1930. After his studies at the Academia Altamira in Buenos Aires, under the Masters like Emilio Pettoruti and Lucio Fontana, Camargo enrolled at the Sorbonne in Paris to study Philosophy.
At the age of 18 he took an extended trip to Europe, during which he came into contact with Arp, Henri Laurens, Georges Vantongerloo e Brancusi, who will influence the most the young artist thanks to his vision of the natural world and of the language of the materials.
Once back to Brazil, de Camargo started to get interested in rising Neo-Concrete Constructivism and Kinetic Op-Art movements, discovering how the volumetric forms captured the immaterial qualities of being. The modulation of the light and form as the expression of feelings will become the focal point of his oeuvre.
From 1961 to 1974 the artist lived in Paris, where, in 1963, he became a member of the Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel (GRAV). Later in the same year, he received the International Sculpture Prize at the Paris Biennale. In that period, Camargo concentrated on the creation of monochrome white surfaces by using parallelepiped shapes and cylindrical wooden reliefs.
In 1964, Camargo had his first personal show at the Gallery Signals in London and in 1965 his works were displayed at his first solo museum exhibition at the Museu de Arte Modern do Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Numerous International exhibitions would follow, including the 1965 São Paulo Biennale, the 1966 and the 1982 Venice Biennale and the 1968 Documenta in Kassel.
Always during the 1960s, Camargo began to experiment his ideas with the Carrara marble, creating sculptures of much larger scale. These works can be still seen today at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire in Bordeaux and at the Palacio Itamaraty in Brasilia.
In 1973 he returned to Brazil and in 1977 he won the sculpture award given by the São Paulo Association of Art Critics. In the 1980s, Camargo began working with a new material, Belgian black marble, that had the capacity to absorb the light, which became reflection, form and space.
In 2000, the il Paço Imperial in Rio de Janeiro, opened a permanent exhibition space dedicated to the artist, which includes a replica of his studio in Jacarepaguá in Brazil. Camargo’s work has been the subject of major retrospectives, such as: at the Museu de Arte Moderna, Rio de Janeiro in 1993, at the Stedelijk Museum of Schiedam in 1994 and at the Instituto de Arte Contemporânea, São Paulo, in 2010. He died in Rio de Janeiro, his home city, in 1990.