Between Agony and Ecstasy: Giacomo Grosso, Italian Painter

Giacomo Grosso, Italian Painter

Between the Agony and the Ecstasy

Giacomo Grosso – Maria E Carmen Marsaglia (oil on canvas, 1893/94) 

A pupil of Andrea Gastaldi, Giacomo Grosso (Cambiano, Turin, 1960 – Turin, 1938) made his debut in 1882 at the
XXIV Esposizione della Società di incoraggiamento alle belle arti (“XXIV Exhibition of the Society of Encouragement of Fine Arts”) of Turin.

The next year, after he finished his studies in the Accademia Albertina and came into contact with the Parisian artistic world, he participated in the Esposizione Generale Italiana of Turin; and almost immediately, he began an intense artistic activity which would take him to Venice in 1895 and other international events: Paris in 1896, Monaco 1899, again Venice in 1912, San Francisco 1915, where he was most celebrated as a fine portraitist.

He would also travel to Buenos Aires, in Argentina, where he participated in the centenary of the International Exhibition of art with a large canvas commemorating the Battle of Maipu, an episode in the war of the Spanish American independence. Since 1906 he had been professor of painting at the Accademia Albertina, in Turin, and in 1929 he was appointed Senator of the Italian Kingdom.



Giacomo Grosso – Le Marie al Calvario (oil on canvas, date unspecified)


All along his career, Giacomo Grosso, like Bouguereau and many other famous artists internationally acclaimed, showed a marked predilection for painting the female figure, which on occasion would stir commotion among the intellectuals of his time. At the same time, however, and like other great artists of his time, he would feel a deep urge to paint religious works of the most precious facture. Hence the somewhat cryptic title of this article.

Giacomo Grosso – Nudo Sdraiato (oil on canvas, 1896)

Luis Miguel Goitizolo

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