Renato Guttuso

Renato Guttuso was born in 1911 in Bagheria in Sicily. When he was a young boy, he lived in a house near Valguarnera and Palagonia villas, that inspired his future paintings. In Bagheria he lived the Sicilian crisis of the postwar period and he saw the progressive decay of the wonderful eighteenth-century palaces in contrast with the advancement of a real urban destruction. Furthermore, he was deeply shaken by the power struggles in his town and his family’s economic problems. Driven by a growing passion for painting, Guttuso decided to move to Palermo in order to attend high school and, afterwards, University. His artistic career was inspired by European figurative artists, such as Courbet, Van Gogh, Picasso. He moved to Milan, travelled through Europe and came back to Palermo, where he opened a study and founded, together with the painter Lia Pasqualino Noto and the sculptors Giovanni Barbera and Nino Franchina the “Gruppo dei Quattro” (the Group of the Four). Rejecting academic rules, Guttuso, with his free figures in the space and the research of the pure sense of color, joined the artistic movement called “Corrente”, that opposed official culture.


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Renato Guttuso