Bice Lazzari 

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Italy - Venezia 1900Roma, 1981

Bice Lazzari was born in Venice in 1900.  After a brief period of studies at the Conservatory, she completed her training at Venice Academy and then on, for a certain period of  time,  at Florence Academy. Her first attempts, following an early figurative period after Venetian naturalism, turned to Cubism  and Abstractism.

In 1935 she moved  to Rome, where a real abstract movement formed only after the war. Therefore she remained isolated, although over the years she got to know Cagli, Capogrossi, Licini, Melotti and then the world of architects, starting with Carlo Scarpa (who was her brother- in-law) and Gio Ponti. 

Elena Pontiggia writes :”...in Lazzari’s work it can be detected  a sense of fragility that is hard to find even in the most lyrical abstractists, from Licini to Melotti. It's a sense of thinness and, almost, of loss which is rare in Italian non-figurative painting. And not just Italian....In her works geometry does not express rationality, but melancholy instead. It seems like each of her lines were perfectly conscious they could be broken, interrupted, diverted, canceled... Lightness, which is the muse of our time, has one of the most convincing interpreter in her (and not coincidentally she was friend with another master of lightness, or better , of the "Superlight", like Gio Ponti).

By contrast in her work it can be found also an enumerated  wisdom, an idea of  persistent repetition as if it were a mantra. The sign reproduces, duplicates, multiplies, as an aspiration for the infinite that is always  defeated but never ceases to express itself. The vulnerability coexists with the will to resist.”

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Bice  Lazzari  nasce  a   Venezia nel    1900 e   dopo   un breve   periodo   di studi al Conservatorio, completa la sua formazione all’Accademia di Venezia e, per qualche tempo, a quella di Firenze. 

Le sue prime prove, dopo un giovanile momento figurativo nei modi del naturalismo veneto, si volgono al cubismo e all’astrattismo. 

Nel 35 si trasferisce  a Roma, dove un vero movimento astratto si forma solo nel dopoguerra. Rimane dunque un’isolata, anche se nel corso degli anni conosce Cagli, Capogrossi, Licini, Melotti, e poi il mondo degli architetti, a cominciare da Carlo Scarpa (del quale era cognata) e Giò Ponti. 

Elena Pontiggia scrive:  ”..c’è nei lavori della Lazzari un senso di fragilità che non si trova facilmente nemmeno negli astrattisti più lirici, da Licini a Melotti. E’ un senso di esilità e, quasi, di smarrimento che è raro  nella pittura non figurativa italiana e non solo italiana.... Nelle sue opere la geometria non esprime razionalità,  ma malinconia.

E’ come se ognuna delle sue linee sapesse bene di poter essere spezzata,  interrotta,  deviata, cancellata. 

...La leggerezza, che è la musa del nostro tempo, ha in lei una interprete fra le più convincenti (e non a caso è stata amica di un altro maestro della leggerezza, anzi del “superleggero”, come Giò Ponti).  

Per contro c’è nel suo lavoro anche una sapienza enumerativa, un’idea di ripetizione ostinata come un mantra. 

Il segno si riproduce, si duplica, si moltiplica, come per un’aspirazione all’infinito che viene tutte le volte sconfitta ma non smette di esprimersi.  La vulnerabilità convive con la volontà di resistere.”     

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Education 1916 Academy of Fine Arts, Florence, Italy 

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Awards 

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1976

Il Centauro d’Oro 

1968 

Purchase prize for the work Bianco e Nero (Black and White) 

1963 

Banco di Napoli’s “purchase prize” 

1950 

Prize winner for La Vanità (The Vanity) in the Venice pavilion, Italy 

1948 

First prize in ENAPI competition for Decorative Art’s models 

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Selected Solo Exhibitions

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2016 

Galleria Six , Milan

2013 

Bice Lazzari: Signature Line, National Museum of Women in the Arts (NMWA), Washington, DC 

2011 

Themes & Variations, (Dedicated room to Bice Lazzari), Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy 

2004 

Bice Lazzari, The dawn of abstractism, Galleria Edieuropa, Rome, Italy 

2002 

Bice Lazzari, Themes and Variations, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy From Futurism to Abstraction, Museo del Corso, Rome, Italy 

2000 

Bice Lazzari, Matter, sign, measure. From Venice to Rome. 

Bice Lazzari a hundred years from her birth, Museo Laboratorio d’Arte Contemporanea, The Sapienza University of Rome, Italy

Bice Lazzari, Opere dal 1925 al 1981. Omaggio nel centenario della nascita, (Tribute on the centenary of her birth), Galleria Edieuropa, Rome, Italy 

1993 

Bice Lazzari, Per filo e per segno, Galleria Riviere, Milan, Italy 

1992 

Bice Lazzari, Galleria Arte Centro, Milan, Italy 

1989 

Bice Lazzari, Two seasons, Casa del Mantenga, Mantova, Italy 

1987 

Bice Lazzari, Bilder, Zeichnungen 1950-70, Frankfurter Westend Galerie, Frankfurt, Germany Bice Lazzari, Opere dal 1921 al 1981, Palazzo Venezia, Rome, Italy

 1984 

Bice Lazzari, Opere dal 1939 al 1979 (Works from 1939 to 1979), Accademia di Brera, Milan, Italy 

1982 

The ‘30s of Bice Lazzari, Galleria Arte Centro, Milan, Italy 

1981 

Bice Lazzari, Centro Comunale di Cultura, Venice, Italy 

1980 

Bice Lazzari, Galleria Weber, Turin, Italy Bice Lazzari, Galleria Civica, Modena, Italy 

1979 

Bice Lazzari, from 1925 to date, Museo di Milano, Milan, Italy Bice Lazzari, Galleria Weber, Turin, Italy 

1970 

Bice Lazzari, Paintings, tempera and drawings, 1925-1970, Palazzo Sturm, Bassano del Grappa, Italy

1969 

Bice Lazzari, Fondazione Querini-Stampalia, Venice, Italy Bice Lazzari, SM 13, Studio of Modern Art, Rome, Italy 

1964 

Bice Lazzari, Galleria il Cancello, Bologna, Italy 

1959 

Bice Lazzari, Galleria la Salita, Rome, Italy 

1958 

Bice Lazzari, Galleria del Cavallino, Venice, Italy Bice Lazzari Galleria la Salita, Rome, Italy 1954 Schneider Gallery, Rome, Italy 

1951 

Roman Gallery La Cassapanca, Rome, Italy 

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Selected Group Exhibitions

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2005 

Still life in 20th century Italy, curated by Renato Miracco, Musée National d’Histoire et d’Art, Luxembourg, Luxembourg Bice Lazzari. Antologica 1925-1980, Galleria Arte Centro, Milan, Italy Filoluce da Balla a Boetti, da Fontana a Flavin, Museo della Permanente, Milan, Italy 

2004 

From Balla to the trans-Avant-Garde, a hundred years of Italian Art at the Farnesina in occasion of the MIART, organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Milan’s Triennial, Milan Artist’s gold, jewellery in Italian art 1900-2004, Museo del Corso, Rome, Italy Italian female artists in the twentieth century, curated by Elena Lazzaroni and Pier Paolo Pancotto, Galleria d’Arte Moderna di Palazzo Pitti, Seravezza (Lucca), Italy Still life in 20th Century Italy, curated by Renato Miracco, Estorick Collection of Modern I talian Art, London, UK Liquid geometries. Four female artists in the story of Felicita Bevilaqua la Masa, curated by Vittoria Surian, Assessorato alla Cultura, Venice, Italy

2003 

Kandinksy and the abstract adventure, organised by the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Villa Manin, Passariano, Italy Artemisia’s cards, Mole Vanvitelliana, Ancona, Italy Fiamma Vigo e Numero. Una vita per l’Arte, Archivio di Stato, Florence, Italy 

2000 

Artemisia. Dialoghi in casa d’Arte, curated by Vittoria Surian, Museo Gipsoteca di Canova, Possagno, Italy

1995 

Art and Power. Europe under the dictators 1930-1945, Hayward Gallery, London, UK. This exhibition travelled to Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain and Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin, Germany 

1993

Venice and the Biennial. The course of taste, Ca’ Pesaro, Venice, Italy

1991 

Masters of Modernity from the Collections of Ca’ Pesaro, Istituto di Cultura Santa Maria delle Grazie, Mestre, Italy 

1985 

Generation 1st decade, III International Biennial of Contemporary Art, Palazzo Vescovile, Riet, Italy 

1983 

The informal in Italy, Galleria d’Arte Moderna, Bologna, Italy Italian drawing in between the two wars, Galleria Civica, Modena, Italy The sign of painting and sculpture, Palazzo della Permanente, Milan, Italy

1981 

Anfra hälften av avantgardet 1910-1940, it is the Swedish presentation of the exhibition L’altrà metà dell’Avanguardia, Stockholm, Sweden

1980 

The other half of the 1910-1940 Avant-garde. Female painters and sculptors in the movements of the historical Avant-gardes, curated by Lea Vergine, Palazzo Reale, Milano, Italy. This exhibition travelled to Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy 

1968 

VI Roman Biennial, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy

1963 

IV Rome and Latium’s Figurative Arts Review Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy Castello Svevo, VIII National Painting Prize, Palazzo del Comune Termoli, Italy

1961 

Exhibition of the Association des Peintres et Amateurs d’Art de Tunisie, Tunisi, Tunisia 

1959

VII Rome’s National Quadriennal of Art, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy 

1957 

XI International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’arte, Milan, Italy 

1956 

VI Graziano Prize, Galleria del Naviglio, Milan, Italy. This exhibition travelled to Galleria del Cavallino, Venice, Italy and Galleria Selecta, Rome, Italy 

1954 

National Exhbition of Abstract Art, Circolo Aristico, Macerata, Italy X International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’arte, Milan, Italy 

1951 

IX International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’arte, Milan, Italy IV Rome’s National Quadriennal of Art, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy 

1950 

XXV International Biennial Art Exposition, Giardini di Castello, Venice, Italy 

1949 

Exhibition of Italian painting, organised by the Union of Italian Women, Florence, Italy

1943 

Barcelona International Exhibition, Barcelona, Spain 1940 VII International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’arte, Milan, Italy

1936 

VI International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’arte, Milan, Italy National Exhibition of Technical Instruction, Rome, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy 

1934 

IV Exhibition “National Market of Artisanship”, Florence, Italy XIX International Biennial Art Exposition, Giardini di Castello, Venice, Italy

1933 

V International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts and Modern Architecture, Palazzo dell’Arte, Milan, Italy 

1931 

Exhibition of Italian Modern Art glass, ceramic and lacework, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands International Exhibition of Modern Christian Sacred Art, Padua, Italy 

1930 

IV International Triennal Exposition of Decorative and Modern Industrial Arts, Villa Reale, Monza, Italy 

1927 

XVIII Exhibition of the Opera Bevilaqua La Masa, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Lido of Venice, I taly III International Biennial of Decorative Arts, Villa Reale, Monza, Italy

1925 

National Exposition of Brera (Biennal Exposition of Belle Arti), Palazzo della Permanente, Milan, Italy 

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9 Aprile / 8 Giugno 2016  Galleria SIX  Milano  “la Fragilità e la persistenza”catalogo a cura di  Chiara Bertoni e testo di  Elena Pontiggia

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