CENISI RAOUL (1912-1991)


Raoul Cenisi, born on 26 September 1912 in Sibenik (Dalmatia), moved to Gorizia in 1924. Here he completed his classical studies and at the beginning of the 1930s approached the Futurist group in Gorizia, beginning in 1932 to exhibit in the Mostra Giuliana The following year he participated in the First National Futurist Art Exhibition in Rome (October 1933) and in the Third Provincial Trade Union Exhibition of Fine Arts in Gorizia organized by Sofronio Pocarini (December 1933). He affirmed himself with the work "La casa del Pazzo". In the same year, he was present at a Futurist exhibition organized in Lonigo and at the Exhibition of the GUF in Trieste organized in Sistiana. In 1936, with Tullio Crali, he organized the GUF Art Exhibition in Gorizia, where his propensity for Expressionism can already be seen with clear references to Metaphysics. The philosophical milieu is undoubtedly that of the new man, strongly individualistic, with strong references to anarchism and the Baudelarian figure of the cursed artist, as can be seen in some of his works. In 1937 he was himself in charge of the organization of the GUF Exhibition, where he exhibited a group of works with which he confirmed his detachment from Futurism. He also participated with various oils and drawings in the lV Mostra del GUF of 1938, which documents his temporary adherence to Surrealism.

In the meantime, he dedicates himself to literary exercises, writes many short stories, poems, collaborates on magazines ("Vita lsontina"), writes theatrical texts. Between 1939 and 1940 he did military service as an officer of the Alpini and immediately afterwards he left for the Greek-Albanian Confronts with the "Julia". From the experience of the war, he brought back many drawings and paintings with landscapes and scenes of life at the front, which he exhibited in the exhibitions of the following years in Gorizia. In fact, he was also present at the exhibitions of that difficult period, the V Mostra d'arte del GUF of 1941 and the Vl Mostra d'arte del GUF of 1942. In 1944 he wrote, with Crali and Marinetti (who had sent him a nice dedication in 1941), the book "Aeromusiche d'alfabeto in Libertà", handwritten and preserved in only two copies. In 1945 he collaborated with the Friulian humorous newspaper "Puf" and with the weekly magazine "L'lnformatore" directed by Silverio Baum. The following year he participated in the "Banquet of poetry" organized "Alla Dama Bianca" in the Castle of Gorizia. In 1946 he made eight ink drawings to illustrate the "Praise of Madness" by Erasmus of Rotterdam and worked intensively on the creation of advertising posters and decorations for events. Graduated in law, he worked as a lawyer for a short period and later joined the judiciary. He married Daria Delpine in 1947 and has two children, Maria Cristina and Giovanni. In 1948 he took part in the Regional Art Exhibition organized by APAl, Association of Isonzo artists, and in other collective exhibitions. His commitment as a painter intensified in the Seventies: in 1975 he was the subject of a large anthological exhibition curated by Fulvio Monai at the Stella Matutina Centre in Gorizia; in 1976 he carried out the Stations of the Cross for the Church of the Sacred Heart.

In 1977 he presented a one-man show at the Gallery "La Bottega" and in 1979 another one-man show at the Sala Comunale d'Arte in Trieste, in 1985 some of his works from the 1930s were included in the great exhibition "Frontiere d'Avanguardia". The years of Futurism in Venezia Giulia, organized by the Musei Provinciali at Palazzo Attems: on this occasion, his early works and his participation in Futurism are known for the first time. In 1987 the same Musei Provinciali invited him to the exhibition "Le Arti a Gorizia nel secondo'900", presented at the Friulian Plastic Arts Centre in Udine. There is no lack of them in his production. In addition to having exercised his satirical vein with countless caricatures of friends and acquaintances, billboards and postcards, he illustrated books, including Engilberto ll Conte di Gorizia di Gigi Luzzatto Guerrini (1971). In 1990 he was present with work at the exhibition/painters of the Caffè del Teatro set up to commemorate a happy exhibition season in Gorizia in the 1950s. His last exhibition is Futurismo Veneto, promoted by his friend Tullio Crali and realized in Padua in winter 1990. Raoul Cenisi died after a short illness on January 19th 1991.