Carlo Carrà biography




Carlo Carrà was an Italian painter. He was born in 1881 in Quargnento, a small town in the province of Alessandria.

Son of a blacksmith, he began his artistic training at the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan where he also began to collaborate with artists such as Umberto Boccioni and Gino Severini, founders of Futurism .

In this period, Carlo Carrà explored the concept of dynamism, i.e. the representation of movement through the deformation of shapes and the use of bright colours. In 1910 he participated in the Futurists' collective exhibition at the Sprovieri Gallery in Rome. It is in this period that he developed his interest in Metaphysical Painting beginning to represent the real world through the creation of unusual spaces and objects, in an unreal and suspended atmosphere.It was precisely the Metaphysical phase that brought him the greatest success and made him one of the greatest exponents of the artistic avant-garde of the early twentieth century. To date, Carlo Carrà is considered one of the founders of the Metaphysical movement, together with artists such as Giorgio de Chirico and Filippo de Pisis.

In 1915 he enlisted in the army and was sent to the front in the Trieste area. This period is very difficult for the artist, who suffers from the death of his war companions and from the conflict that had destroyed his country. This experience is reflected in his works, which become gradually more dark and melancholy.

In 1916 the painter created the work The metaphysics of after lunch , which would become one of his most famous works.This work represents an empty and unreal interior, in which objects are positioned in an unusual way and in which light and shadows create a sensation of unreality. The work is characterized by precision in the representation of details, which contributes to making the image even more mysterious and surreal.In “The Metaphysics of After Lunch” Carrà uses the idea of ​​an internal space as a background, in which objects are represented in an irregular and suspended way, creating a feeling of uncertainty and mystery. The work represents a sort of theater of the absurd, in which the objects do not have a precise function, but become scenic elements of the representation.

After the end of the First World War, Carlo Carrà returns to Milan and joins the group of metaphysical painters. In this period he also began to experiment with figurative painting, drawing inspiration from the Renaissance tradition and Italian popular culture.

In the 1920s, Carlo Carrà met the artist and writer Ardengo Soffici , with whom he collaborated on the magazine Valori Plastici . This magazine represents an important place of artistic and cultural debate, in which the painter can expose his ideas on painting and Metaphysics.

In 1929 he left Italy to move to France, where he came into contact with the artists of Surrealism , which ended up influencing his art. In the 1930s he approached the Novecento movement, founded by the art critic Margherita Sarfatti. Novecento represented a return to the figurative tradition and Italian culture, as opposed to the international avant-garde. In this period, Carlo Carrà created numerous works that represent daily Italian life, such as Piazza del Popolo and The tram rope. These works are characterized by accurate reproduction of details and the use of bright colors.

During the Second World War, he took refuge in Switzerland to escape fascist repression.It is in this period that he began to become interested in religious painting, creating works such as La Madonna del Voto and La Madonna della Neve.

After the end of the war, the artist returned to Italy and in 1948, together with Renato Guttuso and Giuseppe Santomaso, he founded the Fronte Nuovo delle Arti. This movement represents a reaction to academic painting and the conventional representation of Italian art.

In the 1950s and 1960s, he created numerous works representing nature and the Italian landscape, such as The crops, The botanical garden and Lake Como . These works were characterized by precision of detail and the use of natural colors.

Carlo Carrà continues to work until the end, creating works such as The Last Supper and The Passion of the Christ. He died in Milan in 1966, leaving behind an important and influential artistic legacy.