Carlo Carra’s Portrait of Marinetti, painted in 1911, is a notable artwork that captures the founder of the Futurist movement in Milan in 1909. Filippo Tommaso Marinetti’s modern character and competing qualities are powerfully portrayed by Carrà. He wanted to capture movement on canvas and believed that Cubism lacked vitality. The capturing of his subject’s modernity was important to Carrà and this painting served as a means for the artist to explore Futurist themes in his art.
The Futurist manifesto was outlined by Marinetti himself along with other artists and theoreticians, which Carrà sympathized with since he explored radical leftist politics. Of note is Funeral of the Anarchist Galli, another notable Futurist artwork by Carra which also symbolizes his sympathy towards leftist ideals. As an Italian painter, critic, and writer who apprenticed at a young age of 12 years old, his distaste for static works translated into pieces such as Portrait Of Marinetti.
This painting resides privately but forever remains important due to its iconic representation of one of Futurism’s founders while showcasing Carrà’s assertions on Cubism through lively brushwork that isn’t limited by complete space confinement often seen in other movements across Europe during this time period.