Washington\ aise\ – Neoclassicismo e futurismo italiani in mostra a Washington dal 1° settembre in un’esposizione allestita alla National Gallery of Art. L’iniziativa, organizzata in collaborazione con l’Ambasciata d’Italia a Washington DC, s’inserisce tra gli eventi culturali avviati per celebrare il semestre di Presidenza italiana del Consiglio dell’Unione europea e potrà essere ammirata sino al 1° febbraio 2015.

Presentata ieri, 26 agosto, nella sede del prestigioso museo americano, la mostra dal titolo “Neoclassicism to Futurism: Italian Prints and Drawings, 1800–1925” esporrà la preziosa collezione di proprietà della National Gallery di oltre ottanta opere tra stampe, disegni e illustrazioni di quel periodo. Collezione che si è di recente arricchita grazie a importanti donazioni.

Dalle nitide forme neoclassiche all’eclettica grafica futurista, tra le opere in esposizione figureranno dei disegni di Luigi Sabatelli (1772–1850) e Bartolomeo Pinelli (1771–1835), alcune vedute, tra cui Balaklava (1857) di Carlo Bossoli (1815–1884), incisioni di Antonio Fontanesi (1818–1882) e Giovanni Fattori (1825–1908), l’acquerello “Prete all’interno di una chiesa” di Giovanni Boldini (1842–1931) e lo “Studio per Ballerina” (1913-14) di Gino Severini (1883-1966). E ancora, rare opere di Grubicy de Dragon, padre del Divisionismo italiano, e Giacomo Balla, esponente di spicco del Futurismo.

Proprio alla National Gallery of Art, lo scorso primo luglio, il semestre italiano era stato aperto anche negli Stati Uniti con l’esposizione della celebre Danae di Tiziano in prestito dal Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte. Il dipinto resterà a Washington fino al prossimo 6 novembre.

“Sono molto lieto di vedere che la National Gallery dedica un’altra importante iniziativa all’arte italiana”, ha commentato l’ambasciatore d’Italia a Washington, Claudio Bisogniero. “È in questo museo che abbiamo inaugurato e simbolicamente chiuso il “2013 – Anno della Cultura Italiana negli USA”, rispettivamente con il David Apollo di Michelangelo dal Museo del Bargello di Firenze e il Galata Morente dai Musei Capitolini”, ha ricordato l’ambasciatore. “Ed è qui che abbiamo anche aperto, negli Stati Uniti, il semestre di Presidenza italiana dell’UE. Si tratta di una collaborazione di altissimo livello”, ha concluso, “in cui riusciamo a fare da ponte con tante prestigiose istituzioni partner dall’Italia”. (aise)

 

NEW EXIBITION AT THE NATIONAL GALLERY INTRODUCES ITALIAN ART FROM NEOCLASSICISM TO FURURISM     On View September 1, 2014 through February 1, 2015

Giovanni Fattori, Woman of the Gabbro [Donna al gabbro], 1886-1887
etching on wove paper
The Ahmanson Foundation

Washington, DC—A new exhibition at the National Gallery of Art will introduce visitors to a period that is largely neglected by art history, yet produced extraordinarily varied, vital, and often stunningly beautiful art. From Neoclassicism to Futurism: Italian Prints and Drawings, 1800–1925—on view from September 1, 2014 to February 1, 2015—features some 80 prints, drawings, and illustrated books by 53 artists ranging from works inspired by the ancient past to magnificent set designs, poetic landscapes, and striking approaches to non-representational art.

“Italian art of 19th and early 20th centuries included certain groups whose names still resonate—like the Macchiaioli and the futurists,” said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art. “But unlike its European neighbors, especially France, the newly forming country did not have a common style, much less one that developed according to the conventional history of modern art. Italian art had its own varied forms, distinctive life, and development.”

Over the past several years, the Gallery has built its holdings of Italian prints and drawings from this period, creating what has already become the largest and finest collection of its kind in the United States. As much as a presentation of Italian art of the period, this exhibition introduces the results of the Gallery’s efforts.

Notable are the groups of drawings by distinguished academics Luigi Sabatelli (1772–1850) and Bartolomeo Pinelli (1771–1835); grand topographic views like Balaklava (1857) by Carlo Bossoli (1815–1884) etchings from the technique’s revival in the second half of the century, especially those by Antonio Fontanesi (1818–1882) and Giovanni Fattori (1825–1908); and books by the Futurists that combine imaginative texts with abstract imagery. Two promised gifts, the watercolor A Priest in a Church Interior (1900s) by Giovanni Boldini (1842–1931) and Study for “Ballerina” (c.1913-14) by Gino Severini (1883-1966) are critical additions from private collections.

Organization and Support

The exhibition is organized by the National Gallery of Art and celebrates the occasion of Italy’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union from July 1 through December 31, 2014.

Exhibition Overview

Filling three galleries, From Neoclassicism to Futurism spans Italy’s turbulent history, from Napoleonic rule to the splintering and reunification of the nation and its subsequent descent into fascism.

The first gallery features works that reflect the persistence and weight of tradition through the first half of the 19th century in engraved interpretations of old master paintings, drawings inspired by antique models, and theatre designs.

Works in the second gallery reveal a late but passionate embrace of Romanticism and an individualistic approach to art according to the geographic centers where it flourished: Turin, Milan, Rome, and Naples.

The final gallery features works by all the major figures in the Futurist movement, from its founder Filippo Tommaso Marinetti (1876–1944), to Umberto Boccioni (1882–1916) and Carlo Carrà (1881–1966), who all consciously rejected the past and celebrated the dawn of a new age. It also includes works by important precursors of this explicit modernism, such as works by Fattori and Telemaco Signorini (1835–1901), and other responses to the new age, like Still Life with a Basket of Bread (1921) by Giorgio Morandi (1890–1964).

Prints, Drawings, and Illustrated Books at the National Gallery of Art

The Gallery’s collection of prints, drawings, and illustrated books consists of more than 111,000 European and American works on paper and vellum, dating from the 11th century to the present. Because works on paper are highly susceptible to overexposure to light, they can be exhibited only for short periods. For that reason, the Gallery maintains a schedule of changing exhibitions drawn from its own collection or on loan from other institutions and private individuals. Prints and drawings not on view may be seen by appointment by calling (202) 842-6380.

Curator

This exhibition is curated by Jonathan Bober, curator of old master prints, National Gallery of Art, Washington.

 

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