To Dream, to Collect


Ernesto Treccani

1920 - 2009 Milan, Italy

7 Works exhibited


  • About the Artist
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Bibliography

Ernesto Treccani, son of the homonymous founder of the great encyclopedia, was born in Milan in 1920, a city that will remain the ideal location for his artistic production throughout his life. From an early age, when he is still studying engineering, he comes into contact with the avant-garde artistic groups of the city. In 1940, for the first time, he exhibited his works at the Bottega di Corrente and again, in 1943, at the Corrente and La Spiga Galleries. He also founded and directed the magazine "Corrente".

The formative phase reveals, from the beginning, the search towards an alternative language to the nineteenth-century official and shows itself sensitive to the Picasso model and to the recovery of a certain naturalism, typical of the Lombard pictorial tradition. Following the experience of war and resistance he became editor, together with others, of the magazine "Il 45", of the magazine "Realismo" and animator of the "Pittura" group. In 1949 his first personal exhibition was held at the famous Milanese gallery Il Milione, where his monograph was also presented. In this period also the city of Paris began to be a significant point of reference for his art, in which he often went to paint. 

His paintings declare his interest in some themes such as: portrait, landscape, urban view and still life. Moreover, right from the late 1940s he established a precise dialectical relationship with political commitment, characteristic of many of the artists of those years. Already in the 1950s, however, his language began to renew itself towards a more narrative and fabulous direction. 1950 saw his participation in the Venice Biennale, to which he presented the works of black and white. He will return to exhibit here also in 1952 and in 1956 with personal exhibitions of drawings and paintings. From the mid-fifties he began to make himself known outside national borders, exhibiting in London and New York. Also in 1956, Treccani was involved in a cultural delegation headed for China, an experience that greatly influenced him, as evidenced by the series of drawings and watercolors he reported.
In the seventies there are recurrent large canvases and paintings related to the theme of gardens and hedges, in addition to the series of watercolors dedicated to his trip to Cuba.

In 1976, as part of a project organized by the Soviet Ministry of Culture, he exhibited in Volgograd, Moscow and Leningrad. His works are inspired by the most diverse places, the result of his numerous movements, even more simply, within the Italian peninsula. In 1978 Ernesto Treccani decided to create the Corrente Foundation, with the aim of collecting and studying documents, testimonies and works from the historical period between the birth of the Corrente movement and the years of Realism. Furthermore, the Foundation is still, today, a place for meetings, exchanges, debates, seminars and exhibitions on the most current themes of contemporary culture.

From the 1980s, Nice became one of the places where the artist went to paint more often, one of his favorite "creative stays". One of his most famous works dates back to this period, namely La casa delle rondini, made up of about two thousand panels that cover the facade of the building where the Foundation and the Studio Treccani Collection are located, in via Carlo Porta in Milan. Treccani Died in Milan in 2009.


Civic Gallery of Contemporary Art in Copparo (FE)
Civic Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art of Latina
Civic and mail art museum of Montecarotto (AN)
Avellino art museum, with the work "Maternità" (1980-1990).
MAGA - Gallarate Art Museum (VA)
Sacred Art Museum of the Sanctuary of San Gabriele in Isola del Gran Sasso of Italy with the work: Crucifixion (1986).
Villa Groppallo Civic Museum of Vado Ligure with the work: Arrival from fishing in a North Sea (1951 - 1952).
Current Foundation, Studio Treccani Museum of Milan
Santa Chiara Museum Complex of San Gimignano
Permanent Museum of Milan
Fortunato Calleri Museum of Catania
Civic Museum of Paleontology and of Lizzano Man
Cesare Pavese Foundation Santo Stefano Belbo (CN)
Andrea Alfano di Saracena Municipal Picture Gallery
Civic Collection of Drawing of Salò (BS), Musa

A.A.V.V., Ernesto Treccani, Civic Gallery of Modern Art of Ferrara, Ferrara 1974, pp. 89.
BARTOLI Francesco, RUBERTI Francesco, Ernesto Treccani. The fable of Narcissus, Pubbli-Paolini, Mantua 1987, pp. 33.
PIVI Alberto, Ernesto Treccani, Vanessa Editoriale d'Arte, Milan 1976, pp. (20).
Artgate online catalog of the Cariplo Foundation, 2010, CC-BY-SA.

Works by Ernesto Treccani

Order by


24 x 35 cm


25 x 35 cm


50 x 70 cm

250,00 €


60 x 81 cm

400,00 €


165 x 100 x 8 cm

25000,00 €


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