CENTRE FOR FINE ARTS
23 rue Ravenstein, 1000 Bruxelles
Giorgio Morandi. Retrospective
The Centre for Fine Arts presents a major retrospective
of the work of the Italian modernist master Giorgio Morandi.
Guest artist Luc Tuymans presents work of his own in a dialogue with
7 June > 22 September
(Save the date: Press opening: 6 June at 11 am)
Natura morta, 1936,
Oil on canvas, 32 x 37 cm,
Mamiano di Traversetelo (Parma), Fondazione Magnani Roca
BOZAR is paying a tribute to the Italian modernist artist Giorgio
Morandi (who was born in Bologna in 1890 and died in 1964). His delicate still
lifes, always reduced to their bare essence, are
iconic works of modern art. His sense of colour, tone, and composition are still a
source of inspiration for many artists, writers, and film-makers today.
Curator Maria Cristina Bandera,
Morandi specialist par excellence, provides visitors with a comprehensive overview of the master's oeuvre. The exhibition is arranged
chronologically and thematically and shows
Morandi's artistic development from his early years to the end of his career as it presents his
major themes (landscapes and still
lifes of vases, shells, and flowers) and the
varied techniques (oil on canvas, drawing, engraving, and watercolour) that he explored in his work.
The retrospective brings together, for the first time in any of the
Benelux countries, 100 works
by Morandi, including a unique self-portrait, on loan from
more than 40 prestigious private and public collections, including the
Morandi, the Mart museum, the Galleria
degli Uffizi, the Galleria d'Arte
Moderna di Torino, the Pinacoteca
di Brera, and the Fondazione Longhi.
1927, Etching,26,1 x 20 cm, Firenze, Fondazione Spadolini
1927, Oil on canvas, 61,5 x 47 cm, Roma, Camera dei Deputati
Influences and stylistic development
is one of the most recognisable and, at the same time, most enigmatic artists of the 20th century. Despite the international recognition
that came his way in his own lifetime, he led a secluded life with his three sisters in Bologna.
As a student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bologna, he took a particular
interest in French Impressionists and painters such as Paul Cézanne, Georges Seurat, Henri Rousseau and Pierre-Auguste
Renoir and early Italian artists such as Giotto, Masaccio, Paolo Uccello, and
Piero della Francesca. Although he hardly ever travelled, he was well aware of contemporary avant-garde trends such as
metafisica. Around 1920, drawing on all those influences,
Morandi created his own individual style, which he would continue to refine throughout his career.
morta, 1955, Oil on
canvas, 30 x 35 cm, Caldic Collection
1962, Oil on canvas, Bologna, Museo Morandi
– Comune di Bologna
worked obsessively on two key themes: the
landscapes of his environs (the Apennines around Bologna and the Cortile di Via
lifes of vases,
flowers. In these he painted the same objects again and again in similar settings, but with minimal variations in composition, viewpoint, and colour.
He was also a master of the use of different techniques: a subject painted in oil on canvas creates a different atmosphere when it is depicted in a
drawing, an engraving, or a watercolour. For him, each technique was of equal value and he made full use of them all to experiment with.
artistic development can be seen as one of consistent development, without major changes of style. His whole oeuvre is a constant
search for the essence and purity of forms: his later works come close to abstraction.
1954, Oil on canvas, 31,2 x 36,3 cm, Firenze, Fondazione di Studi di Storia dell’Arte Roberto Longhi
Giorgio Morandi, Natura
carta, 16 x 24 cm,
is a true "artist's artist" and his work continues to fascinate other artists today. His paintings feature in
films by Michelangelo Antonioni (La
Notte, 1961), Federico Fellini (La
Dolce Vita, 1960), Robert Aldrich
(Kiss Me Deadly,
1955), and Luca
sono l'Amore, 2009)
and in the writings of
Pierpaolo Pasolini, Paul
Auster, Don De Lillo, and Siri
Hustvedt. The works of contemporary artists – including Lawrence
Carrol, Tacita Dean, and Tony
Cragg – also include references to him.
Intolerance, 1993, Oil
on canvas, 80 x 70 cm,
To illustrate the extent of
Morandi's influence on other artists, BOZAR has also turned to the other arts. The curator, Maria Cristina Bandera, selected
Tuymans as a guest artist; in the final room of the exhibition,
Tuymans will present works of his own – including
Intolerance (1993), Church
(2002) – in a dialogue with Morandi.
The contemporary artist
Parmiggiani, who, like
Morandi, is from the region of Emilia-Romagna, will present an installation in
in the Horta Hall. (To be confirmed)
BOZAR LITERATURE will present a conversation about Giorgio Morandi between
Tuymans and Joost Zwagerman (11 June) and a literary visitor's guide,
Poetry for Giorgio
Morandi, for which six poets (Charles Juliet, Jan
Lauwereyns, Maud Vanhauwaert, Nicole
Malinconi, Charles Wright, and Adam
Zagajewski) have drawn inspiration from Morandi's paintings.
In conjunction with the exhibition, an extensive
catalogue is being published, containing a scholarly essay on the artist and his work by the curator, Maria Cristina Bandera, detailed descriptions of almost all the works, and contributions
by Joost Zwagerman, Yves Bonnefoy, Nicole
Malinconi, Francesco Galluzzi, Roland
Jooris, Jean-Michel Folon, and Luc
In parallel with the Giorgio
Morandi retrospective, BOZAR is joining forces with CINEMATEK to present a multidisciplinary exhibition entitled
Michelangelo Antonioni: Il maestro del cinema
moderno (22 June > 8 September 2013). Antonioni, a pioneer of modern cinema, was one of the legendary Italian directors of the 1960s.
Morandi and Antonioni, who came from the same region, were favourably disposed towards each other. Letters from
Morandi have been found in Antonioni's archives and a painting by
Morandi is clearly visible in his film
Notte. Their work clearly shows them to have had a similar sense of aesthetics, composition, photography, and architecture.
1924, Oil on canvas, 53 x 44 cm, Firenze, Galleria degli Uffizi
- Collezione degli autoritratti
1951, Oil on canvas, 43,4 x 37,3 cm, Firenze,
Fondazione di Studi di Storia dell’Arte Roberto Longhi
biography of Giorgio Morandi (1890–1964)
Morandi was born on 20 July 1890 in
Bologna. After his father's death in 1909, the family moved to a house in the Via
Fondazza, where he continued to live with his mother and three sisters until his death in 1964.
From 1907 to 1913 he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts of his home
town, where he would later teach. He gradually made a name for himself in the art world. In 1928 he took part in the
Venice Biennale with a series of engravings. Two years later, his growing reputation led to his appointment to the chair of Engraving at the Bologna
Academy. In 1934 the great art historian Roberto Longhi called him "one of the best living painters in Italy". His big international breakthrough came at the Venice Biennale of 1948, where he won the first prize for painting, which
straight away made him one of Italy's most respected artists.
career coincided with a turbulent period in Italy, under the Mussolini regime (1922–1945) and during the two world wars. In 1915 he was called up to
serve during the First World War, but suffered a breakdown and was soon released from the front.
Morandi enjoyed international recognition during his own lifetime, he continued to live a simple life. He lived and worked in a single plain room, surrounded by the objects he depicted in his works of art.
morta, 1916, Oil on canvas, 65,5 x 55,5 cm, Private collection
1918, Oil on canvas, 68,5 x 72 cm, Milano, Pinacoteca di Brera,
Centre for Fine Arts
7 June > 22 September 2013
Tuesday to Sunday, 10 am > 6 pm
Thursday, 10 am > 9 pm
Closed on Mondays
€ 8 for
Morandi + Antonioni + b0b Van Reeth (€14 for
€ 11: Morandi + Antonioni
language versions: NL/FR/ENG
BOZAR BOOKS +
BOZAR info & tickets
0032 2 507 82 00 –
firstname.lastname@example.org – www.bozar.be
Cristina Bandera, director of the Fondazione di Studi di
Storia dell'Arte Roberto
Longhi in Florence. Bandera
has curated several exhibitions devoted to
Morandi, including "Giorgio Morandi 1890–1964" (Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2008), and has published numerous essays about the artist.