UMBERTO BOCCIONI (1882-1916): GENIO E MEMORIA
March 23, 2016 – July 10, 2016
Palazzo Reale, Milan
Curated by Francesca Rossi and Agostino Contò
A hundred years after the death of Umberto Boccioni, Milan celebrates the great artist of Futurism, the undisputed protagonist of Italian Avant-garde, with an exhibition at Palazzo Reale from 23/03/2016 to 10/07/2016.
His ingenious approach to the dynamism of form and his research on the relationship between solid mass and space strongly influenced XXI century painting and sculpture. The exhibition is a unique opportunity to discover the artist’s most important paintings and sculptures alongside works from many of his talented contemporaries and an exceptional selection of 60 drawings by Boccioni from the Castello Sforzesco in Milan.
In the light of unpublished documents that have resurfaced, the exhibition presents many novelties and it relates Boccioni’s artistic path, his esteemed international reputation and his work in Milan.
As the result of an unprecedented collaboration between the Castello Sforzesco, the Museo del Novecento and Palazzo Reale, the exhibition will feature 280 works, comprising drawings, paintings, sculptures, engravings, period photographs, books, magazines and documents.
Visitors to the exhibition can admire works from both major museums and private collections from around the world, including the Pinacoteca di Brera, the Gallerie d’Italia and the Chamber of Commerce in Milan, the National Gallery of Modern Art in Rome, the Gianni Mattioli collection, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, the Barilla Collection of Modern Art, the Museo Cantonale d’Arte in Lugano, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Getty Foundation in Los Angeles, the Musée Picasso and the Musée Rodin in Paris, the Osaka City Museum of Modern Art and the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna.
The project also links up with the esteemed Opificio delle Pietre Dure (Workshop of semi-precious stones) in Florence.
Thanks to a unique critical evaluation, the ‘Umberto Boccioni. Genius and memory’ exhibition offers a selective itinerary designed to highlight the visual sources that contributed to the artistic formation and evolution of Boccioni’s style.
The heart of the exhibition – laid out in chronological order and with thematic units – is the exceptional body of drawings by Boccioni, on loan from the Castello Sforzesco, along with recently rediscovered writings and unpublished documents in which the artist’s creativity is identifiable in all its stages of evolution: from his pointillist, symbolist and expressionist phases, whilst still pertaining to the Classic, Renaissance and Baroque tradition, and the coeval European figurative movements up to the affirmation of Futurism.
The preparatory drawings and documents will be exhibited alongside both Boccioni’s pictorial and sculptural works and some models that influenced them which sometimes are unanticipated examples of figurative art ranging from the fifteenth century to the contemporary (Giovanni Ambrogio De Predis, Albrecht Dürer, Sir Frederic Leighton, Jacques Emile Blanche, Giacomo Balla, Giovanni Segantini, Gaetano Previati, Carlo Fornara and others).
Boccioni himself introduces the visitors to the exhibition, which symbolically opens with his famous Autoritratto (self-portrait) from the Pinacoteca di Brera; displayed in the centre of the first hall the self-portrait on the back of the work is also visible.