- NORBERTO PAINTER
Norberto Proietti, better known simply as norbert, was a famous Italian painter and sculptor born in Spello, in 1927.
He is the eldest of five children of an intermediary for the sale of livestock and a merchant of olives and oil, who also runs a local restaurant, an activity in which his mother also participates. In his childhood and adolescence, Norberto showed an early interest in architecture and natural phenomena. The picturesque landscape of Umbria influences his perception of the world and, subsequently, his artistic style.
In 1939, at the age of just 12, he moved to Rome to work with his uncle, manager of a tailor's shop in the Trastevere district. Despite some unpleasant human experiences, Norberto continues his journey, driven by a passion for art and the desire to grow.
During the Second World War, he was forced to return to Spello, where he began to observe his land and the people he was familiar with with more mature eyes. This period of intense reflection led him to develop a deep appreciation for Giotto's frescoes in the Basilica of San Francesco in Assisi, and the Baglioni Chapel in the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria Maggiore in Spello, decorated by Pinturicchio.
At the end of the war, Norberto followed his uncle again, this time to Bergamo, continuing to work as a tailor. However, in 1950, he felt the call of his hometown and decided to open a tailoring workshop in Spello. But the desire to express himself artistically remained strong and, the following year, he painted his first picture.
Starting in 1961, Norberto devoted himself exclusively to art, exhibiting his works in international exhibitions. But his true consecration takes place at Festival of the Two Worlds of Spoleto between 1967 and 1974. In 1971, thanks to the support of Cesare Zavattini, an influential proponent ofItalian naive art, he was awarded the prestigious Suzzara Award.
Norberto becomes famous as one of the most popular naive artists, appreciated for his depictions of friars in miniature against backgrounds of medieval landscapes, Often set in a metaphysical and Edenic Umbria, considered by the art critic Vittorio Sgarbi as the best of all possible worlds.
In addition to painting, Norberto is known for his sculptures made by modeling olive wood and for the Peace pilgrim, bronze work located in front of the upper Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi, dedicated to the patron saint of Italy.
The variety of his subjects is vast: still lifes, nocturnes, Roman countryside, musicians, interiors, wheat, olive trees, fruit, tailoring, Assisi, Venice (St. Mark's Square), They were (Basilica of St. Nicholas), female figures. Among his sculptures, those in wood, ceramic and bronze stand out, depicting figures such as Saint Francis, Pinocchio and the rhino.
Maestro Norberto worked tirelessly until the last years of his life. He died in 2009 at the age of 81 and was buried in the Spello cemetery. As evidence of his artistic and cultural legacy, a museum dedicated to him has been inaugurated in his hometown, where it is possible to admire a vast collection of his works.