Corrente di Vita

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Corrente movement[edit]

In 1938 Ernesto Treccani, with the financial backing of his father, Senator Giovanni Treccani degli Alfieri, founded the magazine “Vita Giovanile”, first a monthly and then biweekly, whose title was later changed to Corrente di Vita Giovanile and finally to “Corrente”.[1] Founded as an independent paper, free from the directives of the GUF (University Fascist Group), the magazine was closed by the Fascist regime on June 10, 1940, when Italy came in to the war.[2] "Corrente" quickly became a point of reference for Italian antifascist culture in the late 1930s,[3] offering itself as a democratic alternative to the official guidelines of the Ministry of Popular Culture, and strongly criticizing the Novecento Italiano movement, the art of the regime and late Futurism.[4]

The Corrente movement covered different fields and disciplines - film, theater, literature, poetry and visual arts - bringing together the best intellectual forces of the time.[5] A plurality of voices that included, among the staff of the magazine: Luciano Anceschi, Giulio Carlo Argan, Antonio Banfi, Piero Bigongiari, Luigi Comencini, Raffaelino De Grada, Dino Del Bo, Giansiro Ferrata, Carlo Emilio Gadda, Alfonso Gatto, Beniamino Joppolo, Alberto Lattuada, Eugenio Montale, Duilio Morosini,[6] Enzo Paci, Vasco Pratolini, Salvatore Quasimodo, Luigi Rognoni, Umberto Saba, Vittorio Sereni, Giancarlo Vigorelli, Elio Vittorini.

Corrente became a hub for a generation of intellectuals and artists who, establishing a bridge with Europe, saw ethics and the role of the artist in society as the key to substantial renewal of the Italian culture.[7] At the first Corrente exhibition held in March 1939 at the Permanente Museum in Milan, there were works by Renato Birolli,[8] Italo Valenti, Arnaldo Badodi, Giuseppe Migneco, Sandro Cherchi, Dino Lanaro, Bruno Cassinari, Alfredo Mantica, Luigi Grosso and also Giacomo Manzù, Gabriele Mucchi,[9] Domenico Cantatore, Fiorenzo Tomea, Genni, Filippo Tallone and Gastone Panciera. The most typical “modernists” of the Milanese tradition were also invited: Carlo Carrà, Arturo Tosi, Raffaele De Grada, Ugo Bernasconi, Piero Marussig, Cesare Monti, Arturo Martini, Francesco Messina, Luigi Bartolini.

The “old guard” of Corrente took part in the second exhibition in December 1939, with artists such as Birolli, Migneco, Badodi, Valenti, Cassinari, Renato Guttuso,[10] Mario Mafai, Nino Franchina and also some “fellow travelers” like Luigi Broggini, Panciera, Tallone, Hiero Prampolini, Antonio Filippini, Mauro Reggiani and Giuseppe Santomaso, and the Roman artists Orfeo Tamburi, Pericle Fazzini, Mirko Basaldella, Afro Basaldella, Luigi Montanarini, Domenico Caputi and Fausto Pirandello.[11] Manzù, Aldo Salvadori, Piero Martina, Sandro Cherchi, Lucio Fontana, Mucchi, Cantatore, Tomea and Genni also joined the exhibition.

During those years the Corrente movement represented a point of reference for a whole generation of artists, including Emilio Vedova and Armando Pizzinato.[12]

After the closure of the magazine, the Corrente activity went on until 1943 with the publication of “Edizioni di Corrente” - such as I lirici greci by Salvatore Quasimodo, I lirici spagnoli by Carlo Bo, Frontiera by Vittorio Sereni, Occhio quadrato by Alberto Lattuada - and with exhibitions at the "Bottega di Corrente", in Via della Spiga 9, around which gathered the new forces of cultural and political opposition.[13]

The "Corrente" painters affirmed a type of art replete with humane and moral contents, in full opposition to the fascist regime.[14] They tended decisively towards expressionist visual forms, and made actual reference to the styles of Scuola Romana, as well as to the great representatives of European fine arts culture, from Vincent van Gogh to James Ensor and to "Fauves", from "Nabis" to "Die Brücke" to Chaim Soutine and Pablo Picasso. After the two famous exhibitions held in March and December 1939, the group organised debates, meetings and "premieres" of those artists that had found their maturity within the magazine's life span. These comprised Renato Birolli, Giuseppe Migneco, Bruno Cassinari, Renato Guttuso, Ernesto Treccani, Aligi Sassu, Ennio Morlotti.[15]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Cf. A. Luzi, ed., Corrente di Vita Giovanile (1938-1940), foreword by Vittorio Sereni, Ateneo Roma (1975)
  2. ^ Statements in E. Treccani, Arte per amore. Scritti e pagine di diario, Feltrinelli, Milano, 1978
  3. ^ Cf. "From Vita Giovanile to Corrente 1938-39", in R. Ben-ghiat, Fascist Modernities: Italy, 1922-1945, pp.168ff., University of California Press (2000).
  4. ^ R. De Grada, Il movimento di Corrente, Edizioni del Milione, Milano, 1952
  5. ^ E.Crispolti, V. Fagone, C.Ruju (a cura di), Corrente: cultura e società 1938-1942: omaggio a Edoardo Persico 1900-1936, Centro di iniziativa culturale del Mezzogiorno, Napoli, 1979
  6. ^ Statements in D. Morosini, L’arte degli anni difficili, Editori Riuniti, Roma, 1985
  7. ^ M.De Micheli, R.De Grada (a cura di), Corrente: il movimento di arte e cultura, Milano, 1985
  8. ^ Statements in R. Birolli, Taccuini 1936-1959, a cura di E.Emanuelli, Einaudi, Torino, 1960
  9. ^ Statements in G. Mucchi, Le occasioni perdute: memorie 1899-1993, L'Archivolto, Milano, 1994
  10. ^ Statements in R. Guttuso, Mestiere di pittore, De Donato editore, Bari, 1972
  11. ^ Z. Birolli, G.Bruno, P.Rusconi, Renato Birolli. Anni trenta Milano e Roma, Archivio di Scuola romana, Roma 1997
  12. ^ Statements in R.De Grada, La grande stagione, Anthelios, Milano, 2001
  13. ^ E. Pontiggia (a cura di), Il movimento di Corrente, Abscondita, Milano, 2012
  14. ^ Cf. M. S. Stone, The Patron State: Art and Politics in Fascist Italy, Princeton University Press (1998.
  15. ^ Cf. "From Vita Giovanile to Corrente 1938-39", in R. Ben-ghiat, Fascist Modernities: Italy, 1922-1945, pp.168ff., University of California Press (2000).

Bibliography[edit]

  • (English) R. Ben-ghiat, Fascist Modernities: Italy, 1922-1945, University of California Press (2000)
  • (English) M. S. Stone, The Patron State: Art and Politics in Fascist Italy, Princeton University Press (1998
  • (English) Italy's Radical Return to Order, on The New York Times (26 December 1998)
  • (Italian) Il movimento milanese di «CORRENTE DI VITA GIOVANILE», e l'Ermetismo, Literary debate at the Gabinetto Vieusseux in Florence dated 6 March 1968
  • (Italian) F. Negri Arnoldi, Storia dell'arte, Fratelli Fabbri, Milan (1989)
  • (Italian) R. De Grada, Il movimento di Corrente, Edizioni del Milione, Milano, 1952
  • (Italian) E.Crispolti, V. Fagone, C.Ruju (a cura di), Corrente: cultura e società 1938-1942: omaggio a Edoardo Persico 1900-1936, Centro di iniziativa culturale del Mezzogiorno, Napoli, 1979
  • (Italian) E. Pontiggia (a cura di), Il movimento di Corrente, Abscondita, Milano, 2012
  • (Italian) G. Desideri, Antologia della rivista "Corrente" con testimonianze di Ernesto Treccani, Giansiro Ferrata e Alberto Lattuada e un indice ragionato 1938-1940, Guida, Napoli, 1979
  • (Italian) E. Treccani, Arte per amore. Scritti e pagine di diario, Feltrinelli, Milano, 1978
  • (Italian) E.Crispolti, V. Fagone, C.Ruju (a cura di), Corrente: cultura e società 1938-1942: omaggio a Edoardo Persico 1900-1936, Centro di iniziativa culturale del Mezzogiorno, Napoli, 1979
  • (Italian) D. Morosini, L’arte degli anni difficili, Editori Riuniti, Roma, 1985
  • (Italian) M.De Micheli, R.De Grada (a cura di), Corrente: il movimento di arte e cultura, Milano, 1985
  • (Italian) R. Birolli, Taccuini 1936-1959, a cura di E.Emanuelli, Einaudi, Torino, 1960
  • (Italian) G. Mucchi, Le occasioni perdute: memorie 1899-1993, L'Archivolto, Milano, 1994
  • (Italian) R. Guttuso, Mestiere di pittore, De Donato editore, Bari, 1972
  • (Italian) Z. Birolli, G.Bruno, P.Rusconi, Renato Birolli. Anni trenta Milano e Roma, Archivio di Scuola romana, Roma 1997
  • (Italian) R.De Grada, La grande stagione, Anthelios, Milano, 2001

See also[edit]

External links[edit]