Futurism and Propaganda

The final room presents some of the principal motifs of iconographic Fascist propaganda, which, especially in the 1930s, with the publication of the Manifesto dell'Aeropittura, were closely interwoven with the development of the Futurist movement. The works of the artists in the various branches of the movement - now commonly referred to as the “Second Futurism” although still under the leadership of Filippo Tomaso Marinetti (whose work was often characterised by suggestive aerial perspectives) echoed the celebrative themes of an official art inspired by the bellicose exhortations and widespread cult of the personality of “il Duce”. This is exemplified in the painting Il Grande Nocchiere (1939) by Ernesto Thayaht, portraying Mussolini as a sort of giant robot. While Fascism’s political strategy entailed the use of Classical models as a basis for sustaining its claim of equality with the Roman Empire, the recent history of the regime was necessarily reinterpreted through a concise yet dynamic language such as that found in the works of the Futurists.