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Giorgio Morandi

/Works and biography

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Flowers (Fiori), 1913
Oil on canvas, 68 x 55 cm
Gianni Mattioli Collection
Long-term loan to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice
© Giorgio Morandi, by SIAE 2008


Painted in the year that Giorgio Morandi was graduated from the Accademia di Belle Arti in Bologna, Flowers is among his earliest surviving works—partly due to the fact that he destroyed many of his paintings at this time. The vigorous and constructive brushwork and the subject itself indicate the overwhelming influence that Paul Cézanne’s paintings exercised on the young artist. In addition to the influence of Cézanne, Morandi’s awareness of Cubism and of Futurism seems visible even if understated. The subject matter is alien to Futurism and the physical density of the green leaves to Cubism. Nevertheless Morandi’s sophisticated awareness of these avant-gardes may have influenced his perception of form and the movement of his brush. The white light intrudes almost physically on the plants and suggests that unification of object and environment that was one of the most firmly held tenets of Boccioni’s Futurism as this time. A certain dynamic fury rustles the fern leaves. Morandi has fixed his gaze so close to the turbulent arrangement of flowers that the white vase is cut off at the base.

credits: Hangar Design Group