Giorgio De Chirico (1888 – 1978) great Italian painter, writer, theatre designer, sculptor and printmaker. De Chirico was one of the originators of Pittura Metafisica. His paintings are characterized by a visionary, poetic use of imagery, in which themes such as nostalgia, enigma and myth are explored. He was an important source of inspiration for artists throughout Europe in the inter-war years and again for all new generation of painters, artists, photographers and filmmakers.
Giorgio de Chirico.
Giorgio de Chirico’s prolific literary activity traces a substantial part of his 90 year-long life and is characterised by a wide variety of genres and styles, ranging from theoretical and critical essays to numerous philosophic studies, treatises on art technique, polemic articles and reviews, poetry and prose, autobiographies, novels, drama and, of course, correspondence, both personal and work-related.
Key to De Chirico's work is his love of the classical past. He came to this through his appreciation for German Romanticism, and it was this that revealed to him new ways of looking at the Classics, and ways of treating themes of tragedy, enigma, and melancholy. For De Chirico, the themes and motifs of the Greek and Roman Classics remained valid even in the modern world. However, he recognized that the clash of the past and present produced strange effects - suggesting sorrow, disorientation, nostalgia - and some of the most powerful qualities in his work come from staging this contrast.
De Chirico was inspired by the European Symbolist artists and their use of dream-like imagery. His works combined a Symbolist sensibility with his love of the classical antiquities of Greece and Italy and his philosophical musings on the true nature of reality. The dreamlike atmosphere of his compositions results from irrational perspective, the lack of a unified light source, the elongation of shadows, and a hallucinatory focus on objects.
Giorgio de Chirico.
To make escape all human limits and make visible metaphysical appearance of true nature of things by using the work of art. Regardless of the visual language De Chirico always sets itself one goal.
The artist Giorgio de Chirico's novel, Hebdomeros is a dream-like book of situations and landscapes reminiscent of his paintings. There is a cinematic feel to the text, as is appropriate for a visual artist. Hebdomeros is a minor work in the grand scheme of things, but it is a perfect period-piece for the surrealism of the early 20th century. In de Chirico’s 1929 novel Hebdomeros – widely deemed as pure literary innovation – “painting is represented in words” (J. de Sanna). The work can be considered an autobiography as well as a literary self-portrait whereby the author “painted” his visions, observations and feelings, in words.
Giorgio de Chirico was fluent in several languages, of which Italian and French were those most frequently used in writing, even if his archive of correspondence also holds letters written in modern Greek, German and even English.