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Fine Art PR Publicity Announcements News and Information

Futurism Exhibition Opens at Martin Gropius Bau

“We want to sing the love of danger, the habit of energy and rashness,” proclaimed the first thesis of the radical and antibourgeois manifesto published in 1909 by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti (himself the son of a bourgeois family) in the Paris daily Le Figaro. The Martin-Gropius-Bau has taken the hundredth anniversary of the “Futurist Manifesto” as an occasion to devote a major exhibition entitled “Languages of Futurism” to the “universal artwork Futurism”. In his eleven-point manifesto Marinetti propagated a new culture embracing all areas of life.

Giacomo Balla
Giacomo Balla, Pessimism and Optimism, 1923, oil on canvas, 80 x 104.7 cm. Courtesy: Private Collection © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2009

The aim was to have all the arts participate in the construction of a new aesthetic of the everyday. Whether photography or film, fashion or design, dance or literature, painting or sculpture, architecture or music – there was no art form that the Futurists did not try their hand at.

Futurism enabled the Italian art of the early twentieth century to take its place among the main avant-garde currents in Europe – especially those in France and Germany. With its interest in revolutionizing all the arts Futurism in Italy was in one sense an artistic movement, but it was also a new way of looking at the cultural life of a country which entered the twentieth century in a state of marked social and economic backwardness and profound divisions.

The exhibition “Languages of Futurism” arose in cooperation with the Italian Cultural Institute Berlin and the Museo di Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Trento e Rovereto (MART), which has a collection of over 4,000 futurist works, including masterpieces by Carrà, Severini, Russolo and Balla, as well as an extensive archive of documents and books by the most important representatives of the avant garde. The museum and study centre are supplemented by the Casa Museo Depero, Italy’s first futurist museum which was founded by Fortunato Depero himself and opened in cooperation with the city of Rovereto in 1959. The director of the museum, Gabriella Belli, curated the exhibition for Berlin. The cooperation with MART has made it possible to present the whole range of forms of artistic expression used by Futurism – from painting and architecture to literature.