Alberto Rossi (Turn 1858 – 1936), St. Moritz
Oil on canvas cm 45 x 64,5 signed (A Rossi), located (St. Moritz) and dated (24-5-1910) lower left.
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Circolo degli Artisti, Turin, 1910
Known more to the general public for the orientalist paintings performed during the frequent trips to Egypt between 1891 and 1914, subjects that interpreted by the Turin artist with vivid sense of color and descriptive punctuality are transformed from simple views into intense frescoes of life daily – in this regard, remember the Arabian Market, 1891, kept at the Civic Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art in Turin – with this painting Alberto Rossi also proves to be a careful interpreter of “true” painting applied to the landscape genre.
In the work presented here, indeed, Rossi confirms himself as a mature artist and fully aware of his own expressive means, depicting a view of the little town of St. Moritz, using a palette of colors that are kept and delicate. Renowned winter and summer tourism resort of the Alps, a land hosting numerous international sporting events, including two editions of the Winter Olympic Games, the town of the Upper Engadine is represented by Rossi through a wise distribution of the architectures that make up the profile of the small town urban setting on the rolling hills sloping towards the lake in the foreground, whose surface reflects the sequence of huts distributed on the highest part of the valley.
Until the 19th century, St. Moritz was a modest village with an Alpine economy, although from the 17th century the thermal properties of the waters had begun to attract wealthy clients. The first spa was opened in 1832, but it was only with the opening of the first large hotels, in the middle of the century, that large-scale tourism development began, first linked to thermalism and then, from the end of the century, to winter sports.
Trained at the Accademia Albertina, Rossi immediately identified himself as a draftsman and portrait painter, focusing mainly on genre paintings, landscapes and oriental motifs. He presented his first painting “Portrait of a man” at the Turin Exhibition of 1884 and 1887, and exhibited five of his paintings in Venice. He traveled a lot in the East and his works are kept in various foreign private collections.