Severini Futurista: 1912–1917

Detail of Still Life: Centrifugal Expansion of Colors by Gino Severini on view in Severini Futurista: 1912–1917

Severini Futurista: 1912–1917

January 28, 1996 to April 7, 1996

This exhibition brought together some of the most vibrant works of the Futurist Gino Severini. It concentrated on the artist’s exploration of a new vision of the future, one filled with noise, light, energy, and speed. Severini was uniquely able to conjure up these forces through his empathic response to new technologies and their observable impact on many aspects of everyday life. Together with his young Futurist colleagues, Severini signed The Manifesto of the Futurist Painters in 1910, which urged modern man to “glory in our day-to-day world, a world which is going to be continually and splendidly transformed by victorious science.”

No element of the important transformations of the period escaped his attention: cities, trains, war machines. Severini was a participant in the tango-crazed world of Parisian nightlife, and he briefly joined in the conquest of the air by learning to fly. As a young man he read widely, and in Paris quickly became part of literary and artistic circles, developing a strong theoretical stance of his own. The new paintings that resulted “put the spectator in the center of the picture.”

Severini Futurista was organized by Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, and the Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth. It was supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and by the Robert Lehman Endowment Fund.

Caption: Gino Severini, Still Life: Centrifugal Expansion of Colors (detail), 1916, oil on canvas. The Art Institute of Chicago, Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949