Influences (Cezanne on Morandi)

Georgio Morandi - Landscape - 1940 - 48 x 53 cm - 19 x 21 in - oil on canvas

This is a great example of how a notable painter permits himself to absorb the considerations of other artists without loosing his own unique approach.   We can feel the influence of Cezanne but this painting is a Morandi.

The sense of volume and space is wonderful.   He achieves this with shapes and values, as well as colour.  I will focus on shapes and integration.

The painting is held together by a large shape in the central area, which integrates the buildings and the foliage beautifully.  (It may help if you blur your vision slightly.)

The roof line of the building at the left defines the top of the shape.  It’s right edge runs down through the other building, continuing to it’s bottom edge, which parallels the top of the shape.  Remember the shapes are not meant to be obvious.

Morandi also has provided a wonderful spatial plane at the bottom right.  This is created by the vertical trunk of a tree and a dark horizontal line to the right.  Can you see the rectangle?  The rectangle not only provides structure but is also a plane which seems to come forth.

I also would like to point out the two parallel branches on the tree.  They parallel the roof line above.  Superb parallel rhythm and structure!

Morandi understood Cezanne.


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