Giuseppe Pellizza da Volpedo

Il quarto Stato (1901)

Giuseppe Pellizza da Volpedo (1868-1907)

self-portraitThis painter, who is little known outside of Italy, studied in Milano, Bergamo and Florence. At first he painted exclusively in a social realist manner, later he incorporated more influences, like romanticism and symbolism and experienced with pointillism. Frequent subjects in his works are peasants and workers, the countryside, portraits and nature.

The painting above, ‘Il quarto Stato’, is seen as his major work, a combination of social realism and some classical ideals. It is a representation of the fourth state – the manual laborers, who are portrayed here very dignified.

At the age of 39 Pellizza hanged himself, upset as he was about his wife’s death.
More about Pelizza on this Italian website.

Panni al sole (1894)

Speranza deluse (1894)

La processione (1894/1895)

[thanks Bernard!]