232 pages | 8 Color Illus. | 51 B/W Illus.
This book examines the work of several avant-garde artists, including Giorgio de Chirico, Fortunato Depero, Scipione and Mario Radice, working in Italy during Benito Mussolini’s rise and fall. It provides a new history of the relationship between modern art and fascism. The study begins from the premise that artists belonging to avant-garde art movements, such as futurism, surrealism, expressionism and abstraction, could produce works that were perfectly amenable to the ideologies of Mussolini’s regime. A particular focus of the book is the precise relationship between ideas of history and modernity encountered in the art and politics of the time and how compatible these truly were.
Chapter 1 – Introduction: Modernism, Fascism and Cultural Rebirth; Chapter 2 – The Folk Machine: Fortunato Depero’s Cloth Pictures, 1919 - 1927; Chapter 3 – The Men Who Turn Around: Scipione and Religion in 1930; Chapter 4 – Mario Radice: Abstraction and Architecture, 1934 – 2014; Chapter 5 – Conclusion: Recreations and the Fascist Age