Boccioni and Catarsini open the spring season at the Vittoriale on the centenary of the death of Eleonora Duse

The Vittoriale degli Italiani opens its spring season with two exhibitions: protagonists Umberto Boccioni and Alfredo Catarsini. The centenary of the death of Eleonora Duse will also be celebrated.

The Vittoriale degli Italiani opens its spring season on March 9, 2024, with two exhibitions, one dedicated to the early artistic phase of Umberto Boccioni (Reggio Calabria, 1882 - Verona, 1916), with works that have never been exhibited to the public, and the other dedicated to the Viareggio painter Alfredo Catarsini.

The first, entitled Umberto Boccioni. Unpublished Paintings and Drawings, will be on view from March 9 to April 30, 2024 within the MAS space. Thirteen works never before exhibited to the public from Umberto Boccioni’s early period will be on view, among more than forty found in the last eight years by curator Alberto Dambruoso.

Three are prefuturist portraits: one dedicated to his beloved sister Amelia, one that is assumed to portray his friend and companion in the Futurist adventure Luigi Russolo, and finally, the last, a young man whose identity is still unknown. A masterpiece from the early Futurist period then stands out: a portrait of a young woman whose face is stretched over a lapis lazuli blue cushion.

“The exhibition of unpublished paintings by Boccioni at the Vittoriale is an extraordinarily important opportunity to understand even more about the greatness of one of the most important Italian artists of the 20th century. The discovery of some portraits of rare beauty executed between 1906 and 1911 and some landscape impressions executed between 1908 and 1909 once again testify to Boccioni’s exceptional gifts as a portraitist and draughtsman,” says exhibition curator Alberto Dambruoso.

A little more than 30 years after his death, the painter and writer Alfredo Catarsini (Viareggio, 1899 - 1993), on the other hand, will be the protagonist of a new anthological exhibition, entitled Il Novecento di Catarsini. From the stain to the machine, set up at the Vittoriale in the spaces of Villa Mirabella from March 9 to September 8, 2024. A selection of 54 works including paintings and drawings, chosen from the artist’s vast pictorial corpus, to cover six decades of his activity (from 1930 to 1987).

“The title of the exhibition stems from a reflection: in his life Catarsini embarked on a path of creative research that, from the strong roots of Tuscan naturalism and macchia painting, led him to cross many of the figurative experiences that characterized the twentieth century, arriving at unprecedented forms of expression in which he addressed the complex theme of the relationship between nature and technology, which became increasingly pressing after World War II and is still highly topical today,” explained curator Rodolfo Bona.

Promoted by the Alfredo Catarsini 1899 Foundation, the exhibition aims to be a narrative of the long creative parabola of an artist who represented an example of originality within the twentieth-century art scene.

The two exhibitions will be opened with the celebration I crowned wisdom today and lit the great fire, which will also be an opportunity to celebrate the divine Eleonora Duse (Vigevano, 1858 - Pittsburgh, 1924) on the centenary of her death. The centenary is an opportunity to re-enact and retell the multifaceted figure of one of the greatest Italian actresses of all time and troubled love of d’Annunzio. At the entrance to the Auditorium of the Vittoriale degli Italiani, an exhibition space will be set up with some of the actress’ objects from Fiorenzo Silvestri’s private collection and from the Vittoriale’s archival holdings.

Image: Eleonora Duse portrayed by Mario Nunes Vais, detail (circa 1905)

Boccioni and Catarsini open the spring season at the Vittoriale on the centenary of the death of Eleonora Duse
Boccioni and Catarsini open the spring season at the Vittoriale on the centenary of the death of Eleonora Duse

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