Spotlight: Giorgio Morandi’s Still Lifes Reveal New Secrets in an Expansive Exhibition in Rome

Currently on view at Mattia De Luca in Italy, “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” will travel to New York this fall.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.
Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

What You Need to Know: Italian painter and printmaker Giorgio Morandi is internationally renowned for his subtle, meditative still lifes of pitchers, vases, and jars. Now, a new exhibition curated by Morandi scholar and author Marilena Pasquali is adding provocative historical context to the artist’s contemplative scenes.

The expansive exhibition, “Il Tempo sospeso” (Suspended Time), presented by Galleria Mattia De Luca, will appear in two stages. Currently, the exhibition is on view at the gallery’s Rome location, with masterworks by the artist dating from across 40 years, from the 1920s to the 1960s. A second installment of the exhibition will take place in New York this fall, in an expanded presentation that will incorporate a wealth of Morandi’s works on paper. 

What We Like It: In its current iteration in Rome, “Il Tempo sospeso” brings together nearly 40 paintings and works on paper that try to unlock what Cesare Brandi referred to as the “difficult and secret” aspect of Morandi’s art.

Pasquali has brought together a series of previously unpublished documents from Morandi’s family archives that offer new insights into the artist’s considerations. Working through the tumult and tragedy of both World Wars, Morandi, the exhibition argues, experienced a disillusionment that would drive him to seek harmony, order, and serenity within his works, while acknowledging a certain aspect of uncertainty.

According to the Gallery: “Putting reality in parentheses in order to experience it. Keeping it at a distance from the world to inhabit it, and accepting it without losing the autonomy of one’s thoughts and the humanity of one’s behavior. Insisting on the importance of suspension, the need for waiting, the necessity of detachment. Rarely has an artist managed to convey all this—reason and sentiment fused together—as Giorgio Morandi did with his compositions of objects and his glimpses of nature. Images that appear to be so ‘neutral’ but that are actually so forceful. So empty of humans and so full of humanity. Morandi is an artist ‘on the brink,’ always poised on the threshold of a time and a world that are changing at untold speed and, as such, he is now more necessary than ever in these times that are so difficult and so fast, so elusive and so often incomprehensible,” Pasquali said.  

See images from the exhibition below.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Installation view “Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” 2022. Courtesy of Mattia De Luca, Rome.

Giorgio Morandi: Il Tempo sospeso” is on view at Galleria Mattia De Luca, Rome, through July 2, 2022. 


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