In November 1933 Rino Valdameri (Crema – Milano 1943) – a patron, collector, great promoter of Italian contemporary art who in the years between the two wars "dedicated the best part of his life to works of art and culture – wrote two letters to art critic Ugo Ojetti with regard to Arturo Martini’s Tobiolo sculpture. In January 1933 Valdameri and the Milano gallery owner Vittorio Emanuele Barbaroux (Milano 1901 – Taormina 1954) decided to sign up sculptor Arturo Martini who was to receive a monthly cheque in exchange for the production of works and royalties in case of sales. In the beginning of the thirties Martini has been mostly focused on terracotta sculpture, which he presented in commercial art gallery and institutional exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale and the Quadriennale of Rome, provoking ambivalent reactions in art critics, who mostly saw this production as too pictorial and expressive and thought the artist did not concentrate enough to sculpture anatomical concerns. In order to move towards critics’ appreciation Martini, thanks to Valdameri and Barbaroux patronage as well, decided to experiment with monumental sculpture so that he went back to using a more traditional material such as the bronze. It was in this context that Martini made the Tobiolo: a large bronze (a fountain) depicting a full-length naked young man (Tobiolo), seated on a stone while holding a fish that was trying to escape from his hands and in whose mouth, there was the channel for the spill of the gush of water. Tobiolo was received positively from art criticism and actually it opened up Martini to monumental sculpture.

Alcune riflessioni sul Tobiolo di Arturo Martini da due lettere inedite di Rino Valdameri a Ugo Ojetti del novembre 1933 / caputo caterina. - In: L'UOMO NERO. - ISSN 1828-4663. - STAMPA. - (2021), pp. 333-341.

Alcune riflessioni sul Tobiolo di Arturo Martini da due lettere inedite di Rino Valdameri a Ugo Ojetti del novembre 1933

caputo caterina
2021

Abstract

In November 1933 Rino Valdameri (Crema – Milano 1943) – a patron, collector, great promoter of Italian contemporary art who in the years between the two wars "dedicated the best part of his life to works of art and culture – wrote two letters to art critic Ugo Ojetti with regard to Arturo Martini’s Tobiolo sculpture. In January 1933 Valdameri and the Milano gallery owner Vittorio Emanuele Barbaroux (Milano 1901 – Taormina 1954) decided to sign up sculptor Arturo Martini who was to receive a monthly cheque in exchange for the production of works and royalties in case of sales. In the beginning of the thirties Martini has been mostly focused on terracotta sculpture, which he presented in commercial art gallery and institutional exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale and the Quadriennale of Rome, provoking ambivalent reactions in art critics, who mostly saw this production as too pictorial and expressive and thought the artist did not concentrate enough to sculpture anatomical concerns. In order to move towards critics’ appreciation Martini, thanks to Valdameri and Barbaroux patronage as well, decided to experiment with monumental sculpture so that he went back to using a more traditional material such as the bronze. It was in this context that Martini made the Tobiolo: a large bronze (a fountain) depicting a full-length naked young man (Tobiolo), seated on a stone while holding a fish that was trying to escape from his hands and in whose mouth, there was the channel for the spill of the gush of water. Tobiolo was received positively from art criticism and actually it opened up Martini to monumental sculpture.
2021
333
341
caputo caterina
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