Michele Cascella



Michele Cascella Painter

Michele Cascella pittore

Michele Cascella was a painter and twilight landscape painter. He was born in the province of Chieti in Ortona sul mare in 1892. He comes from a large and well-known family in the artistic sector between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Given his poor school results, his father, an artist dedicated to painting, ceramics and lithography, initiated him into art and welcomed him into his chromolithographic laboratory together with his brother Tommaso.
Michele Cascella joined the laboratory and began to acquire familiarity with the tools of the trade by making copies of the drawings of Botticelli and Leonardo. Encouraged and supported by his father, at just fifteen years old he had the opportunity to exhibit his works in Milan, Turin and at the Druet gallery in Paris.
At the beginning he was inspired by the symbolist current which combined sensorial experience with spiritual, generating a refined painting full of symbolic mythological and religious references, allowing us to explore human consciousness in the border area between dreams and reality. He favors the evocative power of color following the logic of art as he had been taught. When the Second World War breaks out he is called up but takes his colors with him to imprint the memories of military life. At the end of the war he settled in Milan where he dedicated himself to the techniques of engraving and ceramics, only subsequently cultivating those of watercolour.
In Rome, in 1919, he held a personal exhibition at the Bragaglia Gallery and on that occasion he met Carlo Carrà who, attracted by his suaveness and sweetness, became a supporter of Michele's naturalistic primitivism Cascella. Precisely this tendency towards primitivism will open a rift in the history of 20th century art, for some traditionalist, for others full of subtle modernity behind the apparent traditionalism. His artistic work oscillated between the old and the new, the flowers, trees, mountains and skies seemed to be filled with lightness, full of sensuality and spirituality. In his works the moment that never repeats itself was and is captured with exuberant fragility. The evanescent sensuality of the colors brought him together with Gabriele d'Annunzio for whom his father created the painting of his mother and to whom Michele Cascella dedicated an exhibition that tours Italy from Milan to Naples. During the 1930s the painter made much use of watercolour, recreating serene views of towns and cities, exhibiting in Brussels, Paris, London and receiving numerous acclaim.
From 1928 to 1942 he exhibited at all the editions of the Biennale of art in Venice. In 1933 he collaborated with the Corriere della sera, proposing line drawings depicting city landscapes.
After the Second World War his exhibitions abroad became more frequent: Paris but also South America, especially Buenos Aires and Montevideo and the United States where he settled for long periods of time, alternating periods of stay in Italy and Europe.
Michele Cascella died in Milan in 1989.

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