Protagonisti Del Futurismo Italiano
January 13, 2011
Published in Rome in 1986, the small but interesting--it measures but 4 by 6 inches--folder "Futuristi Futurismo" contains a short introduction to Italian Futurism, "Tuttifuturisti" that includes two Marinetti manifestos; an equally small reprint of a futurist literary journal; and 14 postcards, each with a caricature of a Futurist artist, writer, or thinker, by Tullio Crali.
Crali, born in 1910 (he died in 2000), was a self-taught painter, and a later adherent to Futurist doctrine, getting in on the action toward the end of the movement in 1928. The ideation stuck, however, and Crali remained attached to Futrism’s ideals and aesthetics. More to the point here, he knew most of the players firsthand.
The fourteen caricature line-drawings rendered here as post cards, and I’m guessing you had to send them airmail, if not Fedex, depict all the major Italian Futurists: Giacomo Balla, Antonio Sant’Elia, Enrico Prampolini, and F.T. Marinetti, as well as lesser-known and later generation figures such as Vittorio Farfa and Crali himself. I’m not sure what to do with them, send them out as holiday cards at the end of the year, trade them for Bauhaus cards, or hang on to the folder pending reading Italian. The cards shown here, selected strictly on an aesthetic basis, follow:
Aldo Palazzeschi (1885-1974). Poet, novelist, journalist whose Futurist output dated primarily to the 1910’s. An anti-fascist, his work is characterized as whimsical and ironic, though from what I googled, I think whimsical has a different definition in Italian.
Luigi Colombo (1904-36). Later known as Fillia, he was an innovator of the the second generation of Italian Futurists, leader of the Turin group, and an artist, theorist and editor with a psychological bent.
Fortunato Depero (1892-1960). Early Futurist convert. Painter, sculptor, graphic designer, writer. Lived in New York City between 1928-30, doing costume design for stage productions, magazine covers for Vogue and the New Yorker, and interior design for two restaurants (no, not fast food). Returned to New York for a few years in 1947.
Luigi Russolo (1885-1953). Another early Futurist, Russolo was a painter and composer. His manifesto “The Art of Noises” and his noise concert of 1913 make him one of the first noise music experimental composers. Somewhat unsurprisingly, according to Wikipedia, a performance of his “Gran Concerto Futuristico” in 1917 “was met with strong disapproval and violence from the audience.”
Umberto Boccioni (1882-1916). Painter, sculptor, and theorist. Early leader of the movement, with work now in every major museum. Died in a WWI training exercise.