Giorgio de Chirico

Giorgio de Chirico (July 10, 1888 – November 20, 1978) was an Italian painter born in Volos, Greece founded the scuola metafisica art movement. After studying art in Athens and Florence, de Chirico moved to Germany in 1906 and entered the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich, where he read the writings of the philosophers Nietzsche and Arthur Schopenhauer and studied the works of Arnold Böcklin and Max Klinger. After 1910 he lived in Italy.

De Chirico is best known for the paintings he produced between 1909 and 1919, his Metaphysical period, which are memorable for the haunted, brooding moods evoked by their images. At the start of this period, his subjects were still cityscapes inspired by the bright daylight of Mediterranean cities, but gradually he turned his attention to studies of cluttered storerooms, sometimes inhabited by mannequins.

He won praise for his work almost immediately from the writer Guillaume Apollinaire, who helped to introduce his work to the later Surrealists. Yves Tanguy wrote how one day in 1922 he saw one of de Chirico's paintings in an art dealer's window, and was so impressed by it he resolved on the spot to become an artist -- although he had never even held a brush! Other artists who acknowledged de Chirico's influence include Max Ernst, Salvador Dalí, and René Magritte. De Chirico strongly influenced the Surrealist movement.

The Nostalgia of the Infinite 1911Later in his life De Chirico abandoned the metaphysical style and started painting more realistically, but with much less success.

De Chirico also published a novel in 1925: Hebdomeros, the Metaphysician. His later paintings never received the same critical praise as did those from his metaphysical period.