at the Royal Palace
by Gaia Serena Simionati
“De Chirico, painter accurate,
borrows from the dream the accuracy of the inaccuracy,
the use of truth to promote the false ”
Jean Cocteau, The secular mystery, 1928
Cocteau’s description is illuminating and he was right in crystallizing the mental restlessness of De Chirico’s painting, his great controversial verses and the visual contradictions of the apparent and fake interpretation of reality.
Greek of origin, (born in 1888 in Volos), steeped in the mythological gap of antiquity, of its classicism and of the architectural reasoning that we will often find in his paintings, lived not only in Athens, in the Paris of the avant-garde with his brother Savinio, he he was the initiator of metaphysics. He was also inspired by a baroque style that exudes irony and revisitation, the vehicle of surrealism. He represents the “citizen of the world”, the cosmopolitanism and the universality of art that is unique only to the great, so as to inspire even the overseas pop art and Warhol.
De Chirico spoke four languages, lived in Ferrara, Milan, Florence, Monaco, New York, Rome, was a friend of Gauguin, of Ferrara de Pisis and Carrà where he spent a period of disorientation, found new inspiration and did not paint large sunny squares , but he started still lifes with geometric symbols, biscuits and breads.
With about a hundred masterpieces, until 19 January 2020, the retrospective reconstructing the unrepeatable career of the pictor optimus can be seen at Palazzo Reale, after almost fifty years of the 1970 personal exhibition that showed 180 works when the master was 82 years old. The exhibition curated by Luca Massimo Barbero, promoted and by Marsilio and Electa, in collaboration with the Giorgio and Isa de Chirico and Barcor17 Foundation, is an exhibition made up of unpublished comparisons and combinations that reveal the ghostly world of one of the most particular artistic figures of the twentieth century.
His enigmatic, philosophical and psychological works known for the disturbing Muses or the Italian Squares intended as spaces of psychology, have a fascination that alternating daylight of Mediterranean cities with objects decontextualized like a boat in a living room, seem timeless, immutable eternal and offer the key to a hermetic, often irreverent and controversial painting.
On the other hand in devising a chain of visual reactions based on unconsciousness, novelty and contemporaneity de Chirico wrote in 1918: my paintings chase “the demon in everything […] the eye in everything [because] we are explorers ready for other departures “.
Have a good trip, then!
3 Uncertainty of the poet
4 Greeting from the distant friend
18 disturbing Muses