Early Modernism: 1900-1920 From The Moderna Museet Collection
(Exhibition 2011, Moderna Museet Malmö)
In this exhibition, we highlight works from Moderna Museet’s rich collection of early 20th century art, including artists such as Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, Wassily Kandinsky, Siri Derkert, Sonia Delaunay, Edvard Munch, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and many others.
Finally this week we moved on to one of the highlights of modern art, Picasso. I’m not a huge fan of Picasso at all and I still don’t get why he had to do art the way he did… but after today, I learned that perhaps it was not Picasso’s fault at all that he distorts art the way he did.
Apparently, he had a contemporary named Georges Braque who was very close friends to him (the way Sherlock Holmes was close to John Watson, I suppose). Braque was the “brain of their partnership” as he’d been the one who invented a lot of the cubism techniques that Picasso later made famous through his art.
There was also a correlated art movement in Italy called Futurism, started by Filippo Tommaso Marinetti. He published a Futurist Manifesto and was later joined by a few artists and a composer.
One of those artists was Umberto Boccioni. His works conveyed dynamism, speed and movement - the shapes on his paintings and his sculptures fluid and very non-static. One of the sculptures shown was Unique Forms of Continuity in Space.
Unique Forms of Continuity in Space by Umberto Boccioni
As soon as I laid eyes on it, the first thing that came to mind was, “Transformers! This could be one of the Autobots or Decepticons.” No further explanations needed.
The Futurists apparently appreciated what Picasso was doing to art but they also felt that it was still too static and “two-dimensional” for them. Considering that they were into race cars (I don’t know how; the remark was mentioned in passing by the lecturer on the video), I can see how using newspaper cutouts on one’s painting was not exciting enough for them.