Sunday, 31 August 2014

Leonor Fini, the 31 Women Number Twenty Nine. Her Birthday is 30th August.

Leonor Fini, Argentinian/Italian. Born 30 Aug 1907 in Buenos Ares, died 18 January 1996 in Paris. 
Painter, novelist, illustrator, costume, film and theatre designer.
Leonor Fini is yet another extraordinary artist who has been largely forgotten by the wider art world because she was a woman. In her lifetime her superbly outrageous dress sense and scandalous lifestyle kept the press confused and fascinated; although Leonor the celebrity was one of the most photographed women of the day, there was less interested in her art, outside the galleries and collectors.

Within the Surrealists she was also affected by sexism from the male artists, Dali typified the attitude when he said of her work, "Better than most perhaps. But creativity is in the balls." Fini's art became less acceptable amongst the art-critical elite during the 1950's and 60's as she had no interest in moveing into vast abstractions. She has gradually been downgraded and underrated ever since, becoming merely regarded as a 'niche' artist, while the male surrealists - particularly Dali - continued to be valued.
Eleonora Fini's nationality is confused; from Argentina she moved to Austria, then Italy, and spent much of her productive career in France.  Born in Buenos Aries, she had a disturbed early childhood; she was spirited way from her tyrannical father, Herminio Fini, at the early age of 4 and taken by Malvina, her mother to Europe.  Malvina Braun Dubich was of Serbian, German and Venetian extraction but her family home was Trieste, then an important Austrian seaport. The city was passed to Italy as a result of the treaty of Versailles after World War I.  Herminio refused to divorce his wife, he never gave up demands for the return of his daughter and tried to have Leonor kidnapped.  Malvina only managed to secure a divorce in 1919.