Catalogue entry

Giorgio Morandi 1890-1964

N05782 Still Life 1946

Inscribed 'Morandi' b.r.
Oil on canvas, 14 3/4 x 18 (37.5 x 45.5)
Presented by the Studio d'Arte Palma 1947
Prov: Studio d'Arte Palma, Rome (purchased from the artist 1947)
Exh: Modern Italian Art, Tate Gallery, June-July 1954 (not in catalogue)
Lit: Lamberto Vitali, Morandi: Catalogo Generale 1913-47 (Milan 1977), No.514, n.p. repr. as 'Natura Morta' 1946
Repr: Lamberto Vitali, Giorgio Morandi Pittore (Milan 1965), pl.168; Studio International, CLXXXVIII, 1974, p.171

The title 'Natura Morta' and date 1946 are inscribed on the back of a photograph sent to the Trustees in 1947, when the gift was being considered.

Morandi kept a stock of bottles and jars which he used for his still-life pictures in a variety of combinations and arrangements. He wrote that there were several variants of the present work and the same objects also appear in other pictures. (Letter of 7 July 1953).

The first picture in which several of these objects appear in a similar arrangement was made as early as 1936 (Vitali No.210), but the most closely related still lifes all date from the period 1945-7 (Vitali Nos.489-93 of 1945, 515-23 of 1946 and 575-7 of 1947). All include some or all of the same objects in similar groupings, but no two are exactly the same.

Published in:
Ronald Alley, Catalogue of the Tate Gallery's Collection of Modern Art other than Works by British Artists, Tate Gallery and Sotheby Parke-Bernet, London 1981, p.540, reproduced p.540