It is known that the painter and sculptor Edgar Degas (1834 - 1917) cultivated a close relationship with Italy and with Naples from his youth, yet the city has never, until today, hosted an exhibition dedicated to him. For the first time ever, from January 14th to April 10th, Degas, il ritorno a Napoli finally celebrates that bond, with a selection of almost 200 original works exhibited in the Sala del Refettorio of the Monumental Complex of San Domenico Maggiore, a few steps from Palazzo Pignatelli di Monteleone, residence of the paternal grandfather and part of the family, better known as Palazzo Degas.
Produced by Navigare srl and sponsored by the Municipality of Naples, the exhibition is curated by the expert and art collector Vincenzo Sanfo and is divided into three thematic areas.
The first, referring to Degas's youthful years, reconstructs the atmosphere of Naples at the end of the 19th century, through historical images and the analysis of the portrait of his grandfather Hilaire De Gas, the first important painting made in Naples by the future Impressionist painter, and that of the Bellelli family , his relatives, proposed on display in a multimedia reproduction.
With the second section, dedicated to the distinctive themes of Degas' art: dancers, prostitutes, racehorses and café-chantants of the Belle Époque, the exhibition comes alive with a gallery of drawings, preparatory studies, numerous engravings including monotypes, lithographs and woodcuts, and three bronze sculptures. These works are essential to fully understand the art of the "painter of dancers". The attention to the form and the sign, which is achieved through the study, the imitation of the great masters of painting
Italian as well as the neoclassicist Ingres, together with the exercise of drawing, will accompany him until his death. Drawing, for Degas, reveals the true personality of an artist much better than painting. Even when he joined the Impressionist group and devoted himself to color, Degas did not abandon this conviction.
Alongside the artist's production of drawings and etchings, represented by the series La maison Tellier and La Famille Cardinal and, in facsimile, by the Carnet of drawings for Ludovic Halévy, numerous other famous artists stand out in this exhibition, including Pablo Picasso (etching Degas and Desboutin, La Celestine series) and Jules Pascin (Maison Close ink drawings).
The third thematic area concerns more mundane aspects of Degas' life, his acquaintances with other artists and the most tormented years of his existence undermined by blindness. In this part of the exhibition, pictorial and graphic works by Neapolitan artists are exhibited, such as Filippo Palizzi, known at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Naples, with whom Degas shared disagreement over academic teaching. The area also hosts other illustrious artists such as Domenico Morelli, Frank Boggs, Giuseppe Canova, Ferdinando Pappacena and Édouard Manet, with the precious oil on cardboard Vase de fleure.
Finally, thirty-four photographs taken by Degas, coming from the Bibliothèque National de France, highlight Degas's interest in the recent invention as a study tool for the movement of the human body and horses, welcomed by many Impressionists.
Title: Degas, il ritorno a Napoli
Opening: January 14, 2023
Ending: April 10, 2023
Organization: Navigare srl
Curator: Vincenzo Sanfo
Place: Napoli, Complesso Monumentale di San Domenico Maggiore
Address: Vico San Domenico Maggiore, 18 - Napoli (NA)
Opening times: weekdays from 9:30 to 19:30. Saturday, Sunday and holidays from 9:30 to 20:30.
Ticket cost: starting from 10 euros. 8 euros for holders of the Artecard tourist pass, created by the Scabec company of the Campania Region for the tourist promotion of Campania. Ticket office on site, and online with ticketone.it.
Info and reservations: firstname.lastname@example.org
More info on this website: https://www.navigaresrl.com/