Zinelli, Carlo – Italian Artist

Carlo Zinelli (Italian, 1916 to 1974)

Carlo Zinelli is a canonical Art Brut figure. He suffered from schizophrenia exacerbated by his experiences as a soldier during the Spanish Civil War and WWII. In 1947 he was committed to a psychiatric hospital, but it was not until ten years later that he was allowed to work in a painting studio on the hospital grounds. Zinelli painted for up to eight hours a day, producing nearly two thousand works of art. He painted animals and people in profile using gouache and embellished with inscriptions, often working on both sides of the paper. Zinelli’s mental state deteriorated after he was relocated to a new hospital in 1969; he painted very little and died five years later. The artist Jean Dubuffet – who first championed the work of outsiders as artists and coined the term Art Brut – learned of Zinelli’s work in the 1960s. He added ninety-nine pieces to his Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne, Switzerland. Zinelli’s work is held by numerous other leading institutions and has been in exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL; New National Museum, Monaco; Whitechapel Gallery, London, England; International Folk Art Museum, Santa Fe, NM; American Folk Art Museum, New York, NY; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy; Kunsthalle Bern, Bern, Switzerland; and Museum of Everything in venues worldwide.

Information Courtesy of Rago Arts, October, 2019.

About This Site

Internet Antique Gazette is brought to you by Prices4Antiques.