Renato Guttuso. Portraits
Masterpieces by R. Guttuso on display
Twenty works by a master of Italian realism, Renato Guttuso, are on display at the MUST. These works by the Sicilian painter are focused on the human body, a theme that Guttuso explored throughout his long career, starting with his first paintings when he was young. At that time, he did mainly portraits of his family members or self portraits.
The people in these works are mostly friends and colleagues. This exhibition features a portrait of Corrado Cagli, an important Roman painter, from the Asti Civic Museum; a portrait of the writer Alberto Moravia, a friend of Guttuso's with whom he shared cultural issues, loaned from the Pinacoteca di Brera; and a portrait of the great actor Romolo Valli, from the Civic Museum of Gualtieri (Reggio Emilia). There is also a self portrait, “Autoritratto” (R. Guttuso, Profilo), in which just a few brush strokes are able to define the character of a man (on loan from the art collection of Fondazione Cariplo), and a painting of Lenin, donated by the painter to his political party, the PCI.
The works in this exhibition at the MUST are dated from 1940 to the beginning of the 1980s, and show the clear evolution of Guttuso’s style. The artist started with close contact with cubism and the study of Picasso’s work, as in the case of the portrait of Moravia and the “Boscaiolo”, and he also went through a phase of social realism to arrive at his particular, unmistakable style in the last decades of his life.