De Chirico, Savinio e Les Italiens de Paris
curated by Stefano Cecchetto and Maurizio Vanni
from 17th October 2015 to 14th february 2016
At the beginning of 1928 some Italian artists close to the movement called Ritorno all’ordine (Return to order) met in Paris and would be identified as Les Italiens de Paris. These painters were ready to write again contemporary history of art, restarting from unusual points of view, each one linked in a very personal way to a never forgotten past. These artists intended to propose again the elements of the Renaissance which would re-launch Italian art in the French capital.
Giorgio de Chirico, Alberto Savinio, Massimo Campigli, Filippo De Pisis, René Paresce, Gino Severini and Mario Tozzi did not represent an accidental meeting of artists in a challenging and lively Paris, but the double soul and the heart of a complex and re-evolutionary group that many critics considered as a real artistic movement as Futurism and Surrealism. In the twenties, artists considered the French capital a destination of pilgrimage besides being a place of meetings and clashes, while no occasion would be missed to recall an illustrious personality that had left memorable traces in the Ville lumière: Amedeo Modigliani.
From 1928 to 1933 Les Italiens de Paris, stuck to a sort of unwritten contract, to a fellowship, that under a certain point of view and without binding anyone’s freedom of expression, tried to reaffirm the importance of the Italian visual art, of the here and now; it also tried to cling to unique values of the past that could not be erased by the ambitions or by the perspective revolutions of the historic Avant-garde movements.
The seven Italian artists, – who were never all together in the various exhibitions of the Group, and more often exhibited with other artists – were very different in ideas, artistic styles and esthetical results. Still this wasn’t that important because, probably, in different ways and times a sense of egocentric patriotism prevailed: this would not be seen anymore in Italian art. A group with a double soul: the one of the De Chirico brothers, very near to the surrealist spirit – although they expressed a real love-hate against Breton’s group – and the soul of Tozzi, Campigli and Paresce partially close to the Magic Realism and to the Novecento of Margherita Sarfatti.
The exhibition ends with a tribute to Giorgio de Chirico, made in 1968 by Ezio Gribaudo, artist and personal friend of the Master of Metaphysics.