Paesaggio, Casa bruciata, 1959
Watercolor and graphite on paper, 13 1/4 x 9 3/4 inches
Signed and dated Morandi 1959 lower left
Alitalia Collection, Rome
Sale: Finarte, Rome, 8 December 2009, lot 134
Although Morandi began working in watercolor in 1915, it was not until the last eight years of his life, when he retired from teaching, that he produced the majority of his works in this medium. As with his still lifes, Morandi often created a series of variations on a single subject in his landscapes.
In Paesaggio, Casa Bruciata, one of at least four variants on the subject of a nearby house, the artist was concerned with the formal elements rather than the pictorial aspects of the scene. Morandi’s admiration for Cézanne, expressed here in pale liquid passages and the negative space suggested with the bare sheet, is informed by his own exquisite sense of balance between abstraction and representation to create this glowing image.