aligi sassu

catalogue of the works
Natalia Sassu Suarez Ferri
Fondazione Aligi Sassu

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
PRESENTATION Critical essay catalogue of the works Information

Via Manzoni, 1952


"The composition, livened up by a multitude of figures that seem to sum up all the human types, is related in some sense to the representations of the Caffè, since the themes answer to Sassu's desire of interpreting the sense of his own contemporary, of telling pieces of reality, of being involved in the issues of a daily life." (Bonini, 1984)
With these words Bonini describes a similar work of nearly twenty years before, but the description fits perfectly Via Manzoni as well.
It needs to be added that in this case there is a return to the interest for the streets of Milan, already found during the primitivism. The clear difference is that while at the end of the Twenties and the beginning of the Thirties Milan was a desolate and melancholic place to Sassu, after two decades it has become a place for social life where melancholy and loneliness are still perceivable in the looks of the many figures. The work was displayed at the XXVI Venice Biennale.


La grande blonde, 1962


La grande blonde is a revisitation of a series created around fifteen years earlier.
"During the Fourties, especially between 1946 and 1948, a series of works inspired to the novel Maison Tellier by Guy De Maupassant comes to birth. The novel is a pleased description of one of those houses that, with a prudish deceit, were defined closed. (...) A novel conducted by the irony of Maupassant on the thread that at times separates drama and farce.
The same atmosphere can be found in Sassu's paintings. An atmosphere that fluctuates between seductive allusion and discouraged melancholy, between a polite erotism and a grotesque exhibition of women bodies that pretend a youth already lost. From this comes out a vivid series of female portraits. If the nudity of the fighters facing each other in the mythical scenes of these years is a metahistorical expedient of a narration that wants to allude to the present, the nudity of the women of the Maison Tellier is the nudity as a place of the body, languid pang of life, of the shake of youth, of the deceit of time. "In my Maison Tellier I never intended to paint women with the moralistic pleasure of condemning or judging, as it is in
Toulouse-Lautrec, or in many other Belgian or German expressionist painters. My point of view", Sassu will declare, "is instead the observation of a sentence, of a degrading human condition, from which it is possible to be saved with the same humanity of creatures". (Pizziolo, 1999)


Piazza San Marco di notte,1962

Piazza San Marco di notte moves outdoors the social life of the Caffè, as already noticed for La Strada and Via Manzoni.
While the urban context seen up until now is usually characterised by a general melancholy, Venice is to the eyes of Sassu the city of carnival: in Arlecchino of 1950 the mask is posed in the foreground and accompanied by a view of San Marco and its bell tower. In Carnevale a Venezia of 1958, the figures are in San Marco square itself, like the crowd in this canvas of a few years later. That is how we can explain the social life, the lively colours and the light of this painting, in which there seem to be represented many famous personalities of the time, and among them Sassu himself in the foreground, and his wife in the crowd of the background.



Copyright © 2010, Archivio Aligi Sassu®. Tutti i diritti sono riservati.