Andrè Masson: Painting of the universe. Portraits and self-portraits


‘The 1989 edition of the Meeting offers an exhibition of interna-tional importance on André Masson, an artist whose funda-mental contribution to the sto-ry of modern art is now univer-sally recognized by art histo-rians, intellectuals, collectors and galleries from all over the world. Masson can be conside-red to have been the originator of the deeper and more refined “surrealist” school. His work in-cludes nearly all the figures of classical literature, and also covers the entire creative and fan-tastic universe of the twentieth century. Masson was particularly dedica-ted to the field of portraits, but this choice detracted nothing from his creative verve or from his delicate world of signs and psychic automatism supported by the equilibrium of an exube-rant imagination. Particularly worthy of attention are his fa-mous self-portraits, exquisite paintings constructed on the balance of signs and upon the evo-cative qualities of colour, but no less so are his imaginary repre-sentations of the leading figures of world literature reinterpreted in an illusionistic dimension of singular historical value. The exhibition proposes some sixty masterpieces of the great French artist, and includes por-traits and self-portraits in a number of different mediums ranging from oils and pastels to Ink drawings and watercolours. The collection of portraits offers a comprehensive and significant gallery of personalities, inclu-ding figures from mythology and ancient-history, such as He-racles, Euclid, the Sibyl, Daedalus, Ariadne, Daphne, Electra, Zarathustra and Julius Caesar, and important representatives of 18th and 19th century cultu-re, like Goethe, William Blake, Kleist, Balzac, Nietzsche, Artaud, Breton, Leiris and Barrault. Professor Benincasa writes that “…it is a gallery of portraits which are the highest metaphor of our age’s human consciou-sness… They are the faces of an illustrious past which comes back to life in the complexity and diversity of signs and figu-res which are analytical and conclusive ciphers of every se-cret emotion. A. Masson designs and delineates an imaginary passage which takes us from the face into the depths of a psy-chic landscape with an extraor-dinary freshness of narrative synthesis’.’


20 Agosto 1989 - 27 Agosto 1989


Exhibitions Meeting Exhibitions