Monday, February 10, 2020

Ubaldo Oppi, Painter and Alpini Lieutenant Colonel

According to his Wikipedia entry, Ubaldo Oppi (1889-1942) studied under Gustav Klimt.  Besides that, it seems that while in Paris he had a brief affair with Picasso's ex-girlfriend Fernande Olivier.

Despite those brushes with Modernism, following Great War service in Italy's elite Alpini forces, Oppi briefly associated with the Novocento (Twentieth Century) movement, a more traditional-yet-Modernist-inspired group.

By the 1930s he focused on religious works.  In World War 2 he rejoined the Alpini with the rank of lieutenant colonel, but his health failed perhaps from cancer and he died about age 53.


Figure in Red - c.1912
An example of Oppi's prewar work.  The face strikes me as being a dialed-down version of what Kees van Dongen was doing at the time.

Donna alla finestra - 1921
This "Lady at the Window" looks like his wife.

Ritratto della moglie sullo sfondo di Venezia - 1921
His wife posed against a Venetian background.

La giovane sposa - 1922
The young bride / wife.  Note the tile flooring and one-point perspective in the background that harkens back to classical Italian paintings.

Shepherd Girl - 1926

The Three Surgeons - 1926

Ritratto della signora Alma Giavi Leone - 1926
Like most artists, Oppi painted some portraits to earn income.

Ritratto della moglie - 1928
Another portrait of his wife.  He also painted nearly identical half-view of her the same year.

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