Project Description

Fabio Cipolla (Rome 1852 – 1935), East scents

Oil on panel cm 34 x 24,5 signed (F. Cipolla), situated (Roma) and dated (1878) lower right.

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Trained in Rome and acquired considerable skill in the study of the figure to be composed in refined scenes of genre, Fabio Cipolla also dedicated himself to the landscape and from 1875 is documented in the colony of artists who painted in the countryside of Olevano Romano. With studies of oriental figures he made his first appearance at the exhibitions of Milan in 1879 and Turin in 1880, and in the following years he developed, within compositions characterized by gender subjects, the adoption of a mannered narrative verism. Present above all at the Roman exhibitions (1882, Civetta, 1883, The widow of Naim, 1884, Olevano, At sixteen, Margaret, 1886, Christmas) found a good reception in the French market. Since the end of the century he also executed paintings (Autumn in the city, Winter, recently appeared on the market) without leaving the landscape (La nebbia, exhibited at the Mostra “In arte Libertas” of 1902), for which he also adopted the tempera and watercolor (Ricordi veneziani, Interior of the village, Rome, Municipal Gallery of Modern Art).

Fabio Cipolla

The painting presented here, a small table with a superb chromatism, is a vital and elegant cross-section of the nineteenth century of the great lounges à la page, dances and receptions, enchanted by the disturbing aromas of the Orient. Cipolla, in fact, places an elegant young woman, probably from the upper middle class Roman, in an interior dominated by the presence of decorative elements that recall the passion exploded in those years for chinoiserie and Japan. In this painting the theme of the exotic, of the oriental imaginative is conjugated with a refined ductus conducted in tip of brush, which enhances the chromatic potential and the sensuality of the protagonist.
Just the color and sensuality found in the years that they see active Cipolla, in a Spanish, Mariano Fortuny, their prophet in painting. Fortuny from his land had brought warmth and color, the taste to transpose the joyfulness and playfulness of life onto canvas, making painting the colorful mirror of these sensations. Palettes of lit chroma, paintings of virtuosic elaboration. Sensations that in the different schools of the country take on very different characteristics: from the almost calligraphic taste of some, from the brightness – the so-called “White Empire” – in some, to the 18th century tradition of colorism for others, to the almost calligraphic taste in which it can be traced back the author of this delicate composition.