Renato Guttuso’s Boogie Woogie, A Geopolitical Tableau.
A quasi-panic underlies Renato Guttuso’s Boogie Woogie in Rome at the 1954 Venice Biennale. It depicts a group of teenagers dancing frenetically in front of Mondrian’s eponymous painting. Guttuso’s depiction of gyrating youths draws its negative energy from events taking place just beyond its frame: the “Fantastic Surrealism” of Max Ernst and Joan Mirò just a few rooms away in a Central Pavilion; the utopianism of Oscar Schlemmer in the German pavilion; the reopening of the Soviet pavilion across a Mondrian retrospective in 1956; neorealist cinema, and “Rebel” films made in East Germany, the only Soviet satellite never to earn its own pavilion in Venice.
Romy Golan is Professor of 20th century art at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. The hidden temporalities of art in Italy in the 1960s is the subject of her next book and recent publications include essays in Transbordeur: photographie/histoire/société, 2016: October, 2014; and Grey Room, 2012. She co-authored “Realism as International Style” (with Nikolas Drosos) in Postwar: Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945-1965, Haus der Kunst, Munich, 2016.
From the conference Multiple Modernisms. A Symposium on Globalism in Postwar Art.
Louisiana Museum of Modern Art 2017