Nino Caffé biography




Nino Coffee, born Giovannino Caffè, was a Italian painter and engraver. He was born on 24 June 1908 in Alfedena, in Abruzzo.

After completing his elementary studies in L'Aquila, in 1923 he moved with his family to Ancona, where he began to attend the painting courses of Ludovico Spagnolini and of sculpture of Vittorio Morelli.

In 1930, after getting married, Nino Caffè settled permanently in Pesaro, a city that offers a lively artistic and cultural environment. Here he comes into contact with various local artists, including Bruno Baratti, Werter Bettini, Ciro Cancelli, Alessandro Gallucci, Aldo Pagliacci and Achille Wildi.

Already in 1931 he began to exhibit his works and in 1938 he participated in the Venice Biennale, where he obtained a purchase prize from King Vittorio Emanuele III. In 1935 he graduated from the Istituto Statale d'Arte of Urbino, where he subsequently taught "figura" in the years 1943 and 1944. During the period spent in Urbino, a guest of the Benedetti family, the artist had the opportunity to observe the seminarians and the priests who passed in front of the house, a theme that will characterize his future painting.

Nino Caffè takes an active part in the cultural life of Urbino and in 1948 becomes a member of the Raffaello Academy. In 1944, the Gianferrari Gallery in Milan dedicated a large exhibition to him, while in 1946, in Pesaro, he held a one-man show in the gallery of Rossini's birthplace. From that moment, he begins to enjoy real success, opening a studio in Rome and collaborating with the Obelisk Gallery, directed by Gaspare Del Corso and Irene Brin, which also opens an office in New York. The Metropolitan Museum buys one of his works.

In 1963, the painter closed his Roman studio and returned to Pesaro, while continuing to collaborate with the Galleria dell'Obelisco. He also exhibits in other galleries, such as the Gianferrari of Milan, the St. Luke of Verona, the Alley of Genoa, the Probable of Palermo and the Zoot of La Spezia. In addition to painting, he also successfully devoted himself to engraving.

The works of Nino Caffè have been appreciated by major European and American collectors, consecrating the painter of priests to international fame. His painting is characterized by a vibrant drawing, a refined chromatic composition and a particular technical ability. In addition to religious themes, the artist also explores other social themes and, in recent years, has developed a more dramatic intonation, reflecting on the theme of death.

Nino Caffè died in Pesaro on May 17, 1975, at the age of 66, following a cardio-circulatory collapse. His works are held mainly in private collections, but some paintings are also found in major museums such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Boston Museum.