Giovanni Segantini

Cover of book Giovanni Segantini
Categories: Nonfiction

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AINTER OF THE ALPS.?AT SAVOGNINO WHEN Segantini settled in his Alpine home at Savognino he felt himself to be in a new world. In that high atmosphere the dreamy, watery effects of the Brianza hills are unknown. The air is so rarefied that, save when there are mists, it is absolutely transparent, and the outlines are hard and clear. Impressionism in the form in which it was practised by the Barbizon painters or the Glasgow school becomes an impossibility. Hence a new technique is necessary. This apparently simple fact had been hitherto completely ignored, and because the technique of the banks of the Seine, of the Scotch moors, or of the Italian hills and plains was incapable of reproducing Alpine effects, the Alps were left strictly alone by artists. Before Segantini astonished the world of art with his Alpine work, no painter had coped successfully with thehigh mountains. The Swiss painter Calame had made a series of Alpine pictures of which it was justly observed that they had lost the Alps to the artist. The one really great artist that Switzerland has produced?Bocklin? never painted the high mountains. Tourists go every year to the Alps in their thousands and their tens of thousands, but never an artist among them, unless it be to take a holiday. Other painters besides Calame have occasionally attempted to paint Alpine scenery, but except for an occasional study of rocks, a bit of green pasture in spring-time, or a distant view of snowy peaks, hardly a single picture worthy of the name has been produced. The Tirolese artist Defrigger has painted many charming little genre scenes of mountain life in his native country, but in all his work the figures, with their brightly coloured costumes and their picturesque cottages, form the central motif. The moun... --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Giovanni Segantini
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