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Madrid exhibition

FUTURIST DEPERO (1913-1950)

October 10, 2014January 18, 2015
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From 10 October 2014 to 18 January 2015 the Fundación Juan March will be holding the exhibition Depero The Futurist (1913-1950). By focusing on the life and work of Fortunato Depero (Fondo, Trento, 1892 – Rovereto, 1960) it will aim to offer a new assessment of what has been termed "the Avant-garde of avant-gardes": Italian Futurism.

This visual and literary movement, which was launched with the Manifesto published by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti on 20 February 1909 in the French newspaper Le Figaro, has found its place in history due to the radical nature of its ideas: abolishing all references to the art of the past (considered to be pure "passatismo"), exalting dynamism, the machine, speed and war, freeing words from grammatical structure and multiplying viewpoints in order to express the dynamic interaction of the material with the surrounding space.


I miei Balli Plastici
Fortunato Depero. I Miei Balli Plastici [My Plastic Dances], 1918. Private Collection

During its most active years, between 1909 and 1915, Futurism made an innovative and dynamic contribution to European visual art and literature. The outbreak of World War I resulted in a break in its activities with many of the Futurists participating in the combat and the death of Boccioni. Prior to this, in 1913, Fortunato Depero went to Rome where he met Marinetti and visited the exhibition on Boccioni at the Galleria Sprovieri. His encounter there with the work of Boccioni and Balla led to a transformation in his artistic output as he assimilated Boccioni’s visual dynamism and Balla’s sense of tension deriving from the abstraction of forms. In the spring of 1915 Depero joined the Futurist movement.

Depero is a truly contemporary figure, a precursor of what is now termed a multi-media artist and possessed of a series of traits that are highly characteristic of the artist, including the use of collective creation, self-promotion in the media, self-publicity and involvement in graphic design
On 11 March 1915 Depero and Giacomo Balla signed the manifesto Ricostruzione futurista dell’universo [Futurist reconstruction of the universe], one of the milestones in the development of the Futurist aesthetic. The text propounded a global, synthetic approach to the arts and its fusion with all aspects of everyday life. Depero was in fact far more than a painter who enthusiastically embraced the Futurist creed and abandoned his early, Symbolist influenced work. Rather, he was an artist who constructed an entire Futurist universe, a multi-faceted, multi-media, all-embracing creative figure. Depero was tirelessly active as a painter, sculptor, playwright, set designer, writer, poet, essayist, graphic designer and designer of publicity, fair pavilions, books, magazines, commercial logotypes, toys and rugs. He was furthermore a cultural impresario, founding one of the first artists’ museums in the world (the Casa d’Arte Futurista in Rovereto), and the creator of one of the first artists’ books.

Depero is a truly contemporary figure, a precursor of what is now termed a multi-media artist and possessed of a series of traits that are highly characteristic of current the artist, including the use of collective creation, self-promotion in the media, self-publicity and involvement in graphic design. Depero left Italy with the aim of triumphing in New York, which he called "New Babel", living and working there between 1929 and 1931 and returning in 1948.

Through more than 200 works from international institutions and private and public collections, Depero The Futurist (1913-1950) aims to offer a complete and overall vision of the artist’s work: "Tutto Depero", to use the phrase he employed in one of the final assessments of his work.

Fundación Juan March
Contact
Castelló, 77 – 28006 MADRID – Spain
+34 91 435 42 40 – Fax: +34 91 576 34 20
http://www.march.es