n the first room, some of the main themes of international Symbolism are presented, as read and interpreted by various artists within a timeframe ranging from the end of the 1880s to the 1920s. The themes explored are major ones: life, destiny, birth, maternity, death, the relationship between male and female, nostalgia for life and nature, mysticism and religion; all themes tackled in a variety of styles and painterly forms.
To illustrate these themes, tableaux drapeaux have been chosen; these paintings are in their turn symbols, able to provide a key to interpretation or visual itineraries crossing a large part of the figurative culture of this region in different phases, which then was wholly a part of the Habsburg empire.
Another fundamental theme is that of landscape, explored by most of the artists from the three regions: from Segantini and Bezzi, to Prati, Nikodem, Moser and Moggioli. The lyrical interpretation of nature is here transformed into a linguistic syntax tending towards synthesis in terms of colour and composition, in accordance with the avant-garde research of the time.
A further problematic nucleus arises from the adoption of legend and allegory, made use of above all by Luigi Bonazza, Luigi Ratini and Benvenuto Disertori from the Trentino region. The triptych painted in 1905 by Luigi Bonazza, dedicated to the myth of Orpheus, is highly striking.
The exhibition continues with the monographic rooms dedicated to single artists, whose development led to their working in manners that vary highly but which all share the location of their apprenticeship. Munich and Vienna were preferred to Paris, not only for the convenience of a familiar language or culture or for their proximity, but also because in those years a visit to the Paris salons was gradually being replaced by visits to the major international exhibitions organised by the Secessions, by now raised to the status of crucibles of modernity.
Curated by Gabriella Belli and Alessandra Tiddia.
In collaboration with Barbara Bottacin, Günther Dankl, Margherita de Pilati, Carl Kraus.