Balla, Giacomo

Balla Giacomo (1871-1958). Italian painter. In May 1914 he signed the Manifesto of the Futurist Men’s Suit in which he theorized the Transformable Suit.

Balla Giacomo (1871-1958). Italian painter. In May 1914 he signed the Manifesto del vestito maschile futurista (Manifesto of the Futurist Men’s Suit) in which he theorized the Vestito Trasformabile (Transformable Suit). It is a suit that could be modified by attaching fabric of different colors and shapes by means of snap fasteners.

The first Futurist suit is, according to the painter,  “dynamic, aggressive, annoying, strong-willed, violent, flying, agile, joyful, illuminating, phosphorescent”. But the first clothes created by the artist, in a large or fine checkered pattern, characterized by a basic but dynamic cut, came out in 1912.

Futurism and suits.

Balla and the futuristic movement

One of the masters of the Futurist Movement, he was very interested in clothing, considering it as a radical, futurist renewal of life. Moreover this lead to his Manifesto per la Ricostruzione Futurista dell’Universo (Manifesto for the Futurist Reconstruction of the Universe), signed in 1915 together with his fellow-artist Depero. Then starting in the 1920s, Balla created suits, ties, waistcoats, tapestries, fans, bags and hats in which the lines of velocity in his painting are transformed into extravagant arabesques and geometric decorations of vivid and contrasting colors.

Each one is a unique piece and was created by the artist at his home in Rome, with the help of his daughters Luce and Elica. Furthermore some very important pieces belong to the Biagiotti-Cigna Collection (Guidonia) and to the Coen and Pieroni Collection in Pescara.

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Balla Giacomo, futurist