The “gruppo di corrente”* around which collected the major exponents of art of the period 1938-1940, left to posterity a new pictorial reality devoid of compromise and therefore free from any restriction. This tradition nurtured the great artists Guttuso, Maccari, Migneco etc. Who were able to develop their own style of avant-garde realism.
Lorenzo Chinnici has managed to get the most from this historic political and cultural moment. The masters style has two fronts: on the one hand his depictions of the Sicilian landscape to which he seems deeply connected and on the other the people around him as they go about their daily life, with its attendent drama, joy, and indeed boredom.
His painting, uniform in its multicoloured drawing, therefore pleases for a number of reasons. Not only because it is a clean picture, geometrically composed within precise borders that already demonstrates an uncommon mastery of design which emphasises the subject, but also the choice and combination of colours used not only as a filler but also as an intimate part of things.
Chinnici was born in Merí in NE Sicily in 1942. The Sicilian environment and some bitter childhood experiences influenced his early artistic output and lead to the production of paintings charged with drama which slowly changed and lightened with maturity while at the same time retaining the themes closest to his heart, that is, the Sicilian world.
Thus he went on to create landscapes, portraits and glimpses of the life of country people, fishermen, and children with an almost imaginary realism. In doing this the artist keeping his feet firmly on the ground avoids that grave mistake which many make of offering a sterile representation of reality, not only in the illusion of making something better, but above all drawing a world apart not as a mirror but as a projector.
With the human figures usually very well drawn, he implies a strong tension almost torment, while at the same time his landscapes seem to induce a pleasing serenity, a type of narrative which goes beyond the images and requires the participation not only of the eye but also the feelings.
*Historical note. The youth magazine founded in 1938 as the “Current of Youth” (and suppressed by Mussolini’s censors in 1940 at which time the name had become simply “Current”), during its brief existance became the focal point for many young artists who would later achieve greatness. This grouping became known as the “gruppo di corrente” because of this association with the magazine.