Domenico Baccarini,
Self-portrait with soutane

Domenico Baccarini,
Self-portrait with soutane

Domenico Baccarini, Autoritratto con sottana
Oil on canvas, [1905], cm. 120,5 x 80, Inv. n. 682
Baccarini painted an extensive series of self-portraits. Already during his schooling in Faenza and later in Florence, he took scholastic life drawing lessons beginning with the nude and the figure, then worked on his own portraits as a study of reality. Over the following years this research became more psychological, attentive to introspection, reflecting this trend both in and out of the world of art. It was not a coincidence that the last drawing by the artist is a dramatic self-portrait with the words “last days” to the side.

In this self-portrait dated 1905, Domenico Baccarini appeared self-confident, with a proud and provocative pose, as Antonella Pozzi Imolesi emphasised in a study on Baccarini’s self-portraits, in keeping with the canons of the dandyism defined by Baudelaire. To obtain the atmosphere of disorientation and strong expressiveness, he gave an intense luminosity to the face, with a definition of movement and blurring of the background, but also partially of the body, like the hands. This is how he develops a self-portrait that, if one begins with a self-confident figure, seems to develop the representation of the double and the ego other than self or – put more simply – one’s own ghost.

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