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Born Apr. 7, 1883, in Cortona, Tuscany; died Feb. 27, 1966, in Paris. Italian painter.
Severini, who did not have a formal art education, took up painting in 1901, after becoming close friends with U. Boccioni and G. Baila in Rome. From 1906 his principal place of residence was Paris. Severini was one of the founders of futurism (1910). His futurist paintings convey a sense of dynamic movement through the combination of episodes that take place at different times and through the use of a mosaic-like technique derived from neo-impressionism. Severini combined this dynamism contradictorily with a rationalistic composition and color scheme and with precise form (La Danse du Pan-Pan à Monteo, 1910–11, Museum of Modern Art, New York). Severi-ni’s work showed abstract tendencies in the second decade of the 20th century and at the end of the artist’s life. Cubist qualities were evident between 1915 and 1920 and in the 1930’s. On the whole, Severini worked in the spirit of neoclassicism. His extremely subjective striving to create forms of the “art of the future” that were “elevated above” real life constantly led him to distort and vulgarize motifs from reality.
REFERENCESModernizm: Analiz i kritika osnovnykh napravlenii (collection of articles), 2nd ed. Moscow, 1973.
Courthion, P. G. Severini, 3rd ed. Milan, 1946.