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12. July, 2010 / Idun

Giorgio Morandi

Giorgio Morandi (1890-1964) was one of the most impressive Italian painters of his time, specialising almost exclusively in still life and landscape paintings. In his early years Morandi explored styles closely related to Cézanne and Cubism, and for a brief period he took a dive into the Italian art movement of Metaphysical painting. It was after this period in his life that Morandi developed the style that he is known for.

He focused increasingly on subtle gradations of hue, tone, and the arrangement of objects in a unifying atmospheric haze. He would limit his use of subjects to bottles, boxes and the like, and he would remove their labels and use matte colours to remove reflections and lettering. By doing this he created a range of anonymous objects which he could then arrange and rearrange to explore their abstract qualities and the relationship between them. When grouped together the bottles and boxes gain an almost monumental quality, resembling the architecture of medieval Italy.

What I personally find most interesting about Morandi’s paintings is his use of colour, and the simplicity of the subject. The colours are very subtle and natural, which gives the forms focus. The simplicity of the paintings almost show traces of both cubism and minimalism, creating a very pure style. The colours of many of his paintings are very similar to my own palette; cool and subtle “hazy” colours.

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