Umberto Boccioni

Umberto Boccioni

Style: Futurism

Lived: October 19, 1882 - August 16, 1916 (20th century)

Nationality: Italy

Umberto Boccioni was born on October 19, 1882 in Reggio Calabria. He studied art through the Scuola Libera del Nudo at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome, beginning in 1901. He also studied design with a sign painter in Rome. In 1902, Boccioni studied Impressionist and Post-Impressionist styles in Paris. During later 1906 and early 1907, he took drawing classes at the Accademia di Belle Arti. In 1901, Boccioni first visited the Famiglia Artistica, a society for artists in Milan. There he became acquainted with fellow Futurists including the famous poet Filippo Tommaso Marinetti. The two would later join with others in writing manifestos on Futurism.

Boccioni was both a Futurist painter and sculptor. One of Umberto Boccioni's best known paintings is The street enters the house (La Strada Entra Nella Casa) in the Sprengel Museum in Hanover, Germany which featured an exhibition on futurism in 2001. Other important Boccioni works include the bronze scupture, Unique Forms of Continuity in Space (1913) and the painting, The City Rises (1910). His first solo exhibition was held in 1910 at the Galleria Ca' Pesaro in Venice.

Boccioni expressed the overarching beliefs of Futurism in his Techincal Manifesto of Futurist Sculpture. Other works that he co-authored include Manifesto of the Futurist Painters and Techincal Manifesto of Futurist Painting published around 1910. In 1912, Boccioni shifted to sculputre and published his Manifesto of Futurist Sculpters. All of these writings call for young artists to intensely pursue living, dynamic, and original forms of art. Traditional art techniques and styles were discarded and art critics ignored. Futurists glorified transformations of the world brought on by science.

Boccioni died on August 16, 1916 in Verona after falling off a horse during a training exercise for World War I.

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