CONF Jan 20, 2019

MoMA's Twentieth-century Italian Art (New York, 12 Feb 19)

CIMA - Center for Italian Modern Art, Feb 12, 2019

Chiara Trebaiocchi

CIMA – the Center for Italian Modern Art (NYC) is organizing the conference:

"Methodologies of Exchange: MoMA's Twentieth-century Italian Art (1949)".

The conference uses the 1949 Museum of Modern Art exhibition "Twentieth-century Italian Art" as a case study to examine the various methodologies or approaches taken in recent years to explore the artistic exchange between the United States and Italy in the twentieth century. By examining the history of this exhibition and the traveling exhibitions that it spawned, we will explore the reception of Italian art and artists in the US, the growth of networks and collaborations between US dealers and artists, and the role that Italy played in the idea of art-making among American postwar artists. This particular subject allows for other questions as well: How did an important institution like MoMA shape the narrative of American modernism? How did Italy help Alfred Barr and MoMA rethink a Franco-centric vision of modern art after the war? How did the American art world deal with the problematic legacy of Fascist Modernism?

This Study Day will be held at CIMA in connection with the 107th meeting of the College Art Association and the 70th anniversary of the MoMA exhibition.

Program schedule:

Metaphysical Masterpieces exhibition viewing and registration – 11.15am
Welcome by Emma Lewis, Executive Director of CIMA

Morning Panel: Italian Projections

Laura Moure Cecchini – “Positively the only person to be interested in the show”: Romeo Toninelli collector and diplomat between Milan and New York.

Davide Colombo / Silvia Bignami – Alfred H. Barr, Jr. and James Thrall Soby’s Grand Tour in Italy: from collectors to Venice Biennale and Rome Quadriennale

Sergio Cortesini – The Italian Novecento in America before 1949

Respondent: Emily Braun

1 – 2.30pm
lunch break

2.30 – 4.45pm
Afternoon Panel: American Responses

William Norman – Saul Steinberg and the Unstable US Cultural Field of the Late Forties

Adrian Duran – Neo-Cubism and Italian Painting ca. 1949: More Than Meets the Eye

Sharon Hecker – A Friendly Competition: Collecting Postwar Italian Art in the Midwest

Ilaria Schiaffini – It’s Roman Holiday for Artists: The American Artists of L’Obelisco

Respondent: Melissa Dabakis

Q&A – Concluding Roundtable with All Speakers

To register:

CONF: MoMA's Twentieth-century Italian Art (New York, 12 Feb 19). In:, Jan 20, 2019 (accessed Jul 18, 2024), <>.