Aldo Salvadori. Intimate portrait of a woman and soul

It is our pleasure to present an exhibition of Aldo Salvadori’s selected works. This catalog has been divided into three parts, each devoted to a different painting genre: nudes, portraits, and still-lifes, which represent the spectrum of the artist’s interests.

Portrait of Alda Salvadori and Giovanna Anzalone, April 1999, source: Luca de Luca

Aldo Salvadori was born in Milan, but had a Tuscan ancestry. His origins may have influenced his life path, because all of the greatest painters of the Renaissance era came from Tuscany and the city itself is a pearl on the culture map of Italy. Salvadori began his artistic studies there – he moved from the north of the country to Florence to study in the Istituto d’Arte di Firenze. He deepened his knowledge about Renaissance art while visiting Gallerie degli Uffizi and by copying old masters’ works. Salvadori’s trip to Paris in 1926 was a turning point in his artistic career. At that time, Paris was the center of artistic turmoil and the cradle of avant-garde painting. It is worth noting that Salvadori did not follow the newest artistic trends blindly, but turned to Impressionist painting, which had long been overshadowed by the tendency towards the abstract art. He learned plenty from Impressionist masters – his works feature a subtle, fair color palette, while the sketchiness of his compositions brings into mind August Renoir’s and Edgar Degas’s art. It also became apparent that it was not in Salvadori’s nature to follow a specific trend: although he was a witness of the awakening and disappearance of numerous artistic movements, he never became part of any of them. Once he chose his path of figurative representation, he was faithful to it and focused his artistic research on the issue of form.

Aldo Salvadori, Young woman in lingerie', 1971

Another important part of Salvadori’s artistic life was his academic career, at first, in the Istituto d’Arte di Padova, and next, in Villa Reale di Monza, where he taught together with sculptor Marino Marini. Since 1944, for over twenty years, Salvadori was a professor at the prestigious Accademia di Brera, teaching the nude painting. He left the academy in 1968 to show solidarity with the protesting students and moved to Bergamo, a nearby town. That was the beginning of another phase of his artistic journey. For over thirty years, Salvadori worked away from the busy Italian metropolis. During that time, he painted what critics called ‘pieces full of melancholy’: portraits of pensive, mysterious women, who appear lost in thought and absent-minded; the space and the objects in it, as well as lively or subdued colors, define the character of the compositions. The paintings are also reminiscent of Édouard Vuillard’s art and, especially of Pierre Bonnard’s intimate portraits. Bonnard repeatedly painted his only muse, the woman closest to him, his beloved wife Marthe Bonnard, usually in the domestic setting, sitting at a table, reading or posing. Salvadori often portrayed his wife and muse Giovanna, with a similar desire to represent a woman’s intimate world. Salvadori’s still-lifes are part of a dialog with his close friend: painter Giorgio Morandi. Morandi’s works are full of artistic rigour and mathematical harmony and in this way they organize nature. Salvadori, on the other hand, with his fragmentary representations of reality and unconventional use of perspective, invites his viewers to re-observe well-known objects endowed with an air of mystery.

From 1930 to 1956, Salvadori regularly exhibited his works at the Venice Biennale. His paintings were also shown at the individual exhibition in Palazzo Strozzi in Florence (1979) and in Palazzo della Permanente in Milan (1991), as well as at the numerous exhibitions in the company of the acclaimed artists such as: Giorgio de Chirico, Pierre Bonnard and Édouard Vuillard.

Pierre Bonnard, "Bathroom", 1932, Museum of Modern Art,
source: wikimedia commons

We invite you to the exhibition:

6 - 21 July 2018 
Monday-Friday, 11AM-7PM
Saturday 11AM-4PM 

We invite you to read the exhibition catalog: 

Exhibition under the patronage of the Italian Cultural Institute in Warsaw:

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