PORTRAIT OF ARTURO TOSI 1937
Oil on canvas, cm 46 x 38
Title and date on stretcher
Provenance: Baer Collection, Florence
Bibliography: Monograph Carlo Levi, C.L. Ragghianti 1948, p.46 n. 7 Work authenticated by Fondazione Carlo Levi, Rome. Reg. n. 633
The artist’s portraits give us an idea of the breadth and variety of his interests and contacts, ranging from painting and literature to politics, architecture and the cinema, delineating a panorama of half a century of Italian civil and cultural history, from the twenties to the sixties. In addition to family members, he depicts leaders of the anti-fascist movement, including Carlo Rosselli, Leone Ginzburg and Aldo Garosci, the painters Filippo De Pisis, Renato Guttuso, Afro and Arturo Tosi, the poets Eugenio Montale, Pablo Neruda and Carlo Emilio Gadda, the architect Frank Lloyd Wright and the actresses Anna Magnani and Silvana Mangano.
Arturo Tosi (1871-1956) was one of the most prominent Italian painters of the first half of the twentieth century. After having attended the Brera free school of the nude, he developed his style along the lines of the Scapigliatura school, inspired by the work of Ottavio Ranzoni and Tranquillo Cremona.