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Futurist Machine Art, Constructivism and the Modernity of Mechanization

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This chapter addresses the theoretical and ideological development of the so-called 'machine art', which was outlined in 1922 in a homonymous manifesto by the painters Ivo Pannaggi and Vinicio Paladini and revised later that year in a version signed by Enrico Prampolini. While scholars have largely tackled the thematic specificity and visual impact of this text within the general development of Italian Futurist art in the course of the 1920s, they have failed to take up the issue of its specific place in the ongoing construction of the European artistic framework of the 1920s. This essay aims to redefine the history of the concept of Futurist machine art from a different perspective, by highlighting its complex and contradictory relations with contemporary artistic practices in Europe and with the emergence of Constructivism.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2009

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