SEVERINI Gino
Italian painter; born in 1883 in Cortona. In Rome, in 1901 he met Boccioni, the future theoretician of Futurism, and in the following year Balla, who became his first master. In 1906,Coming to Paris, he found in Seurat an inspiration and an example. He setted in the studio where later Dufy, Braque, Suzanne Valadon and Utrillo were to work. He painted his most important pictures there, among them The Buolevard and Pan-Pan at the Monico ( 1909-1911). In Montmartre he made frieds with Picasso, Max Jacob, Pierre Reverdy and Apollinaire, who was a witness at his marriage to the daugther of the poet Paul Fort. In 1910 his name figured among the singners of the Futurist manifesto (vide Futurism), and in the following year he brought about a meeting of Boccioni, Carrà and Apollinaire in Paris. He participated in the first Futurist exhibition at the Berheim- Jeune Gallery. His picture Pan-Pan at the Monico is considered the masterpiece of Futurism. Raymond Escholier writes in his book La Peinture au XXe Siècle that the Cubists, after having seen these canvases painted with the pure colours of Seurat, gave up chiaroscuro and returned to the colour and bright tones of Neo-Impressionism. In this justly famous picture Severini attempted to introduce a feeling of movement into space by multiplying the frenetic rhythms that isolate form while still pursuing it. Later he felt a need to counter Picam's frenzied individualism with an an liberated from the tyranny of personality, and his research brought him close to the work of La Freanaye, LOger, Juan Gris, Metzinger and Gleizes. His subsequent works and studies on the Secti&v d'Or led him from Cubism to Chmiciam. In 1922, in a series of frescoes executed for Monwgufoni Castle, near Florence, he painted masks from the Italian commedia dell' arte, a motif that can also be found in his canvases. But at this time he was already beginning to be more interested by mural art than by easel painting. Invited to Switzerland, he decorated several churches in Semsales, La Roche, Fribourg and Lausanne with frescoes and mosaics. He also executed mosaics in Italy and then in France. He has published notable works, in both Italian and French, as well as a volume of memoirs.
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