Balla, Giacomo

▪ Italian artist
born July 24, 1871, Turin, Italy
died March 1, 1958, Rome

      Italian artist and founding member of the Futurist (Futurism) movement in painting.

      Balla had little formal art training, having attended briefly an academy in Turin. He moved to Rome in his twenties. As a young artist, he was greatly influenced by French Neo-Impressionism during a sojourn he made in Paris in 1900. Upon his return to Rome, he adopted the Neo-Impressionist style and imparted it to two younger artists, Umberto Boccioni (Boccioni, Umberto) and Gino Severini (Severini, Gino). Balla's early works reflect contemporary French trends but also hint at his lifelong interest in rendering light and its effects. Balla, Boccioni, and Severini gradually came under the influence of the Milanese poet Filippo Marinetti (Marinetti, Filippo Tommaso), who in 1909 launched the literary movement he called Futurism, which was an attempt to revitalize Italian culture by embracing the power of modern science and technology. In 1910 Balla and other Italian artists published the Technical Manifesto of Futurist Painting.

 Unlike most Futurists, Balla was a lyrical painter, unconcerned with modern machines or violence. The Street Light—Study of Light (1909), for example, is a dynamic depiction of light. Despite his unique taste in subject matter, in works such as this Balla conveys a sense of speed and urgency that puts his paintings in line with Futurism's fascination with the energy of modern life. One of his best-known works, Dynamism of a Dog on a Leash (1912), shows an almost frame-by-frame view of a woman walking a dog on a boulevard. The work illustrates his principle of simultaneity—i.e., the rendering of motion by simultaneously showing many aspects of a moving object. This interest in capturing a single moment in a series of planes was derived from Cubism, but it was also no doubt tied to Balla's interest in the technology of photography.

      During World War I Balla composed a series of paintings in which he attempted to convey the impression of movement or velocity through the use of planes of colour; these works are perhaps the most abstract of all Futurist paintings. After the war he remained faithful to the Futurist style long after its other practitioners had abandoned it. In addition to his painting, during these years he explored stage design, graphic design, and even acting. At the end of his career he abandoned his lifelong pursuit of near abstraction and reverted to a more traditional style.

Additional Reading
S.K. de Rola, Balla (1983); Maurizio Fagiolo dell'Arco, Balla: The Futurist (1987); Susan Barnes Robinson, Giacomo Balla: Divisionism and Futurism, 1871–1912 (1981).

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Balla, Giacomo — ► (1874 1957) Pintor italiano. Conoció a Boccioni y a Severin, y en 1910 se adhirió al futurismo, de cuyo primer manifiesto fue uno de los firmantes. El tema constante de sus obras es la representación del movimiento en el espacio. La niña que… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Balla — Balla, Giacomo …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Giacomo Balla — (July 18, 1871 March 1, 1958) was an Italian painter. BiographyBorn in Turin, in the Piedmont region of Italy, the son of an industrial chemist, as a child Giacomo Balla studied music.By age twenty his interest in art was such that he decided to… …   Wikipedia

  • BALLA (G.) — BALLA GIACOMO (1871 1958) Signataire avec Boccioni, Carrá, Russolo et Severini du Manifeste des peintres futuristes , le 11 février 1910 à Milan, Giacomo Balla est le plus âgé du groupe. Né à Turin, Balla décide très tôt de sa vocation de peintre …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Giacomo Balla — En el torbellino de las tendencias de vanguardia, o mismo semifuturistas, domina el color. Debe dominar el color como privilegio típico del estilo italiano. Nel groviglio delle tendenze avanguardiste, siano esse semifuturiste, o futuriste, domina …   Wikipedia Español

  • Giacomo Balla — Giacomo Balla, né à Turin le 18 juillet 1871 et mort à Rome le 1er mars 1958, est un peintre et sculpteur italien du mouvement futuriste. Sommaire 1 Biographie 2 Œuvres …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Giacomo Balla — (* 18. Juli 1871 in Turin; † 1. März 1958 in Rom) war ein italienischer Maler des Futurismus. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben und Werk 2 Werke (Auswahl) 3 Literat …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Balla — ist der Name folgender Personen: Bálint Balla (* 1928), ungarisch deutscher Soziologe Emil Balla (1885–1956), deutscher lutherischer Theologe Erich Balla (1885–1943), deutscher Offizier, zuletzt Generalmajor sowie Kommandeur eines Bataillons der… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Giacomo — is a male given name, Italian version of James.It may be refer to:People*Giacomo Puccini (1858 1924), an Italian composer *Giacomo Casanova (1725 1798), Venetian adventurer and author *Giacomo Meyerbeer (1791 1864), a German born opera composer… …   Wikipedia

  • Balla — (izg. bȁla), Giacomo (1871 1958) DEFINICIJA talijanski slikar, glavni predstavnik futurizma; supotpisnik »Prvog futurističkog manifesta« (1910); poznat po prikazima kretanja i brzine koje postiže slikanjem i stapanjem mnogo identičnih gustih… …   Hrvatski jezični portal

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