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Giovanni Segantini (Arco, 1858 - monte Schafberg, 1899)
Charcoal on canvas, 180 x 130 cm
Ground floor, Symbolist Room (inv. no. GAM 1562)
Legacy of Luigi Frugone, 1953
The canvas presents a sketch, in charcoal, of The Lovers made by Giovanni Segantini which is “formally” linked to two similar young people depicted in the well-known painting of 1896, L'amore alla fonte della vita (Milan, Galleria d'Arte Moderna).
"The playful and carefree love of the female, and the pensive love of the male linked by the natural impulse of youth and spring", as Segantini wrote in 1896. The work shows little of the expressiveness and exuberant colours typical of the painter because it is unfinished, the two figures were perhaps made for the symbolist painting Il Paradiso terrestre (The earthly paradise) which was interrupted by the artists sudden death. Entitled Adamo ed Eva (Adam and Eve) it dates from between 1896 and 1899, presenting the two figures, with soft and flowing volumes, in a manner verging on classicism.
The museum also houses a beautiful charcoal by Segantini, the “Pastore addormentato” (Sleeping Shepherd) from around 1893, from the collection of the famous conductor Arturo Toscanini who bought it during a sale of works belonging to the painter Vittore Grubicy De Dragon, who, with his brother Alberto, had been the principal market of the Italian divisionists.