14 thoughts on “London Wassily Kandinsky exhibition

  1. 2007-03-13 10:50

    Kandinsky’s spell on Italian art
    Milan show charts his influence on abstract artists

    MILAN (ANSA) – Wassily Kandinsky’s impact on the development of international abstract art is well-documented but for the first time a new exhibit in Milan charts his influence on Italian artists in depth.

    The show looks at how Kandinsky’s work in the first decade of the 20th century shaped the development of a group of Italian artists in the 1930s and 1940s.

    “The exhibition looks not only at the opinions of artists and critics but also compares the painting of the Russian master with the best Italian abstract artists over two decades, in a far more comprehensive fashion than ever before,” said the exhibit’s curator Luciano Caramel.

    The show is centred on a group of paintings by Kandinsky that first went on display in Milan in 1934, including one of his best-known masterpieces, Composition IV. The painting, normally held by the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, cost exhibit organizers 100,000 euros in insurance and transport, The rest of the exhibition focuses on the work of 52 Italian artists.

    A first section is devoted to early abstract works by Lucio Fontana and Osvaldo Licini between 1931 and 1934.

    The show moves on to explore the years 1934-35, featuring work by artists that were exhibiting in the trendsetting Galleria del Milione.

    It then considers the connection between abstract art and Futurism, a link explored by Bruno Munari, Enrico Prampolini and Cesare Andreoni.

    A later section considers the post-war period from the mid-1940s through to the early 1950s, centred on two exhibitions staged in 1947: ‘Abstract and Concrete Art’ in Milan and ‘Classic Abstract Art’ in Florence.

    Speaking at the presentation of the exhibition, art critic and former culture undersecretary Vittorio Sgarbi said the show was a crucial step towards restoring visibility to a little considered period in Italian art.

    “Italian abstract art may be less well-known and celebrated than Futurism, but this exhibit seeks to remedy the situation to some extent,” he said.

    “This is the first major attempt to historically evaluate this particular artistic trend, which developed over a period of 20 years and which was extremely significant and fruitful for Italian art history”.

    The show in Milan’s Palazzo Reale runs until June 24.


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