Luis Tomasello was an Argentine painter (of Italian origin), born in 1915. He went to the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes Prilidiano Pueyrredón in Buenos Aires from 1932 to 1938 and continued his studies at the Escuela Superior de Bellas Artes Ernesto de la Cárcova from 1940 to 1944. Before traveling to Europe for the first time in 1951, he met painters Emilio Pettoruti and Carmelo Arden Quin. (He co-founded the Salon Arte-Nuevo with Arden Quin in Buenos Aires in 1954). He stayed in Paris for six months in 1951 before settling permanently in the city in 1957.
Though Tomasello’s early paintings and drawings may seem figurative, they were in fact based on geometric structures and influenced by Cézanne’s theories. Tomasello explored geometric abstraction and carried out kinetic experiments on flat surfaces, developments he further pursued after he moved to Paris in 1957. His kinetic reliefs, consisting of sequences of black and white polyhedral elements arranged over blank surfaces, generated virtual movement and visual illusions. From the 1960s on, he experimented with color, light and shadow effects, the outcome of which was a prolific series entitled Atmosphère chromoplastique. These kinetic reliefs and plastic objects, Objet plastique, featured square shapes and wood rods cut at various levels and thickness. In the early 1980s, he pierced lines and small geometric shapes through black monochrome reliefs: the Lumière noire series.