Gino Severini

Born 1883. Died 1966.
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Gino Severini Biography

Italian artist Gino Severini was a leading figure of the Futurist movement in the years leading up to the First World War. His Futurist paintings built upon the geometry of Cubism, and he used iridescent color to achieve the dynamism, movement and energy that was synonymous with Italian Futurism. His celebration of new technologies echoed the building excitement and optimism of the early decades of the twentieth century in Italy.

Born in Cortona, Italy, in 1883, Severini briefly studied at the Rome Fine Art Institute before moving to Paris in 1906, where he met and worked alongside Amedeo Modigliani, Georges Braques and Raoul Dufy, and partook in the Parisian avant-garde in the formative years of his career. In 1910, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, the founder of Futurism, invited Severini to sign the first Manifesto of the Futurist Painters alongside Carlo Carrà and his friends Umberto Boccioni and Giacomo Balla. Severini’s works synthesized the Futurist obsession with the slate-wiping effects of war with his vibrant, Cubo-Futurist aesthetic, resulting in lively urban scenes. He helped to organize the first Futurist exhibition in Paris in 1912, linking the Futurist artists working in Paris with those in Rome, and helped disseminate the aesthetic of Futurism on an international scale. After the First World War began, his disillusionment and the potential for additional violence led him to distance himself from Futurism; he regretted his early involvement, turned instead to Neoclassicism, and experimented with the flattened forms of Crystal Cubism.

Along with his endeavors in painting, Severini was a prolific and accomplished author, publishing theoretical essays and books on painting throughout his career. He was awarded the Premio Nazionale di Pittura at the San Luca Academy in Rome, where he was given a major solo exhibition. Severini’s works can be found at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Tate Gallery, London, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and other major institutions around the world.

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Artist Image: Credit: History and Art Collection / Alamy Stock Photo