Antonio Ligabue is at Pontassieve. That is the title of the exhibition - held in the capital of the Val di Sieve, just a few kilometres from Florence - dedicated to one of the most tormented painters of the twentieth century, so much troubled that he was also known as The crazy one.
He grew up in Switzerland and had a painful childhood because of grief, sent to Emilia Romagna when he was 20 years old, alone, and without speaking a word of Italian. The biography of Ligabue is characterized by lonely never ending journeys long the Po River, he wound up in mental hospitals due to self-endangerment, apprehension, strangeness. He was one of a kind.
This can be seen clearly from his paintings. The ones that depict the visual memories of rural scenes as well as the imagined tropical jungles. Painting was for Ligabue a desperate attempt to pull feelings of despair outside his mind, to liberate himself from demons.
There are 27 paintings on display. Some minor paintings and some of the worldwide known Ligabue. The tigers with their opened jaws, the struggle, the simplicity, the toil, the colours. These images seem to have come directly from his concrete mind and yet the details are so hard to miss.
In his famous self-portraits, like the one "with the dog" present in the show, deformities are emphasized; without ever slipping into the parody of himself. In this case Ligabue gives his work an even stronger psychological connotation.
In the drawings one can see the strong pressure applied to the paper, the charged and disturbed strokes. Although the subjects are the same, these were not sketches prepared for canvas. They shout for themselves.
The urgency of Ligabue to express himself is obvious in the sculptures, bronze melted after his death but created with what he had available, the clay of the Po River, which was more easily to find and cheaper than paint – moulding it with his saliva, bending it with strong pressures from his thumb, never giving up on the details.
Tags: famous, painters, ligabue, exhibits, italy, tuscany, florence
Location: Florence, Toscana, Italy (load item map)
Marked as: approved
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