Cascella, Michele

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Portofino Harbor, 1959
Oil on canvas, 39 x 28 1/2 inches
Signed and dated lower left
Portofino Harbor, 1959
Oil on canvas, 39 x 28 1/2 inches
Signed and dated lower left

Cascella, Michele



Michele Cascella (Italian, 1892-1989) Michele Cascella was born on September 7th in Ortona a Mare in Chieti, Italy to artist Basilio Cascella; his brother was artist, Tommaso Cascella. Cascella was a watercolorist and pastellist, though he also completed a number of delicate oil paintings. A painter of landscapes, he worked mainly in the Abruzzi, a wild, mountainous region in Italy east of Rome. Known for its lush forests, the Abruzzi was an ideal setting for Cascella who enjoyed painting flower fields. In 2003, he was featured in the collective exhibition, De Chirico et la peinture italienne de l’entre-deux guerres (De Chirico and Italian Painting of the Iinterward Period) at the Musee de Lodeve.

Michele Cascella was a very congenial and humane person, as well as a tenacious worker. The techniques Michele used were pastels, pencil and pen and ink drawings, oils, watercolors, ceramics, lithography and textiles. His most frequent subjects were the landscapes of Abruzzi, locations all over Italy, Portofino, Paris, London, New York, California, Mexico, Hawaii, Tuscany, flowers, portraits and still life. Michele himself said that Henry Rousseau and Picasso had the greatest impact on the art world, while Van Gogh, Utrillo and Raoual Dufy most influenced his own work. He is referred to as an Italian Impressionist, post-impressionist and neo-impressionist. Also primitivism and crepuscular landscape artist are used to describe his work. Michele won the gold medal at the Paris Exposition Universelle in 1937. In 1972 the Comune of Milan gave Michele a gold medal of merit and again in 1980. In 1975 Michele became an honorary citizen of Portofino. In 1977 the city of Ortona dedicated the Pinacoteca Comunale to Michele. In 1979, the Academy of Art Dino Scalabrino of Montecatini Terme gave Michele the Life of artist 1979 prize.

Museum collections:

• Basilio Cascella Civic Museum in Pescara
• Pinacoteca Comunale Michele Cascella in Ortona
• Museum of the Risorgimento in Milan
• Victoria and Albert Museum in London
• Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art in Turin
• Banca Nazionale del Lavoro in Rome
• Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume in Paris
• National Museum of History and Art in Luxembourg
• Museo casa natale Gabriele D'Annunzio in Pescara
• Museum of Modern Art in Brussels
• Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna in Rome.