Contemporary art. Trip to Italy with Christie’s. The prospect is tempting: let’s put aside the palette with the colors that most obsess us in this period (red, orange and yellow) and let’s try to draw a new map of the regions of the Bel Paese.
Christie’s auction house – which often looks towards our Peninsula: one is also online auction entirely dedicated to the jewels with the title La dolce vita jewels, with the sale of precious items that belonged to the great Franca Valeri– focuses on the art of the twentieth century made in Italy.

Mapping Modern and Contemporary Art is the new online auction (from January 20 to February 10), a trip – region by region – among the masterpieces of modern and contemporary art.

The noble lords of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries departed from Northern Europe, Germany and England to complete their Grand Tour: starting from Turin then passing through Milan then east to Venice before the long stop in Florence where the Uffizi they were as fashionable then as today (by the way: after 77 days of closure, the most famous and social Italian museum reopens its doors to the public again this week) without neglecting intermediate stages in learned Bologna or in Parma. From there, the Grand Tour proceeded to Rome and Naples. And of Naples we know what Johann Wolfgang Goethe wrote in his I travel to italy (1813-1817): “Say or tell or paint what you want, but here every expectation is overcome”The tour for the more daring then continued in Sicily and Sardinia.

More than three hundred years have passed since then and Christie’s has decided, at a time when traveling freely is forbidden to us, to weave a new itinerary, a Grand Tour of Italian art modern by selecting works closely related to the main regions of our country at auction.

Emilio Vedova, Diptych ’89

It begins – obviously – with the Serenissima: it was born in Venice in 1919 Emilio Vedova, giant of abstract art and graphic dynamism, so “turbulent” in the large dark canvases that it takes your breath away as it happens in Diptych ’89, painted in the year of the fall of the Berlin Wall (starting price: 120 thousand euros).

Descend south, cross the Rubicon and arrive in Emilia, the “far west of the Po Valley” made up of straight roads and flat horizons so loved by Luigi Ghirri, one of the greatest Italian photographers of the last century (1943-1992). Her Modena, a shot from ’73, tells us about our local province and its suspended atmospheres (estimate: 4-6 thousand euros).

From Emilia to Tuscany the leap is short but everything changes: in this Grand Tour of modern art it is Alberto Magnelli (1888-1971), considered by many to be the first true Italian abstract painter, to represent Florence with its geometric shapes (we see them in Painting, a work of ’47, estimate: 50-80 thousand euros).

Alberto Magnelli, Painting

We move to Umbria and advance by just a decade: we are at the end of the fifties and the painting of Piero Dorazio (1927-2005) has the flavor of abstract expressionism and of an Italy that is ready for the economic boom that looks to America, as happens in his Without title dl ’59 (estimate: 7-10 thousand euros).

Piero Dorazio, Untitled

Do you want to visit an online exhibition? Here is Kansinsky

It is the red of the canvases of Franco Angeli (Left opening, dated 1960: everything is political) to take us to Lazio before taking the ferry to land in Sardinia where the thoughtful and reflective art of the amazing Maria Lai (1919-2013), the first among the artists to recover the ancient weaving technique of her island and transform it into a new work of art, capable of connecting the past and the present. After Maria Lai, sewing will no longer be just a useful and practical exercise, but a way of seeing and describing the world: her Book of frames of ’79 (estimate 20-30 thousand euros). Another island, Sicily, and another woman, accompanies us at the end of this Grand Tour: Carla Accardi (to which one is currently dedicated monographic at the Museo del 900 in Milan which will remain open until June) shows the bright colors of its land in the composition Red green (it is from ’66 and the estimate is around 35 thousand euros) and it almost seems to smell the intense perfume that has, in every season, the air of Sicily.

Franco Angeli, Left opening

Carla Accardi, Red green

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