A cura di Anna Pia De Luca
Albert (Umberto) Chiarandini (1915-2007) is undoubtedly the most talented Italian-Canadian artist to date. Mostly known as a portrait artist in Toronto and surroundings, Chiarandini produced approximately 3,000 oil paintings of high artistic quality, which include portraits of himself, his family members, and Toronto’s wealthy and humble, a few political compositions and still lifes, and his inspiring landscapes – a valuable historical record of long-gone Southern Ontario and Northern Italian rural areas. Feeling that the time has come to examine Chiarandini’s life and works more closely, especially in light of his personal background, and his experience as an Italian-Canadian artist with an early Italian school education operating in the context of Canadian art institutions and traditions, this volume sets out to offer a critical reading of his oeuvre, so as to delineate the distinguishing features of his art, decipher the symbolism displayed in them, explain his technical ambiguities, and identify possible influences and original traits in his production. The introduction is by Deborah Saidero, with contributions by Olga Zorzi Pugliese, Ewa Chwojko-Srawley and Anna Pia De Luca.
Artista italo-canadese di indiscusso talento, Albert Chiarandini è autore di circa 3.000 dipinti ad olio: autoritratti, ritratti di famiglia, serie consacrate agli hippies di Toronto e agli 'ultimi'. La qualità delle sue opere, l'intensità delle emozioni che esse suscitano e i contenuti sociali, politici e ideologici che veicolano, fanno della sua opera un oggetto di studio appassionante e meritevole d'attenzione. I saggi raccolti in questo volume, in inglese, si focalizzano sul background dell'artista: l'infanzia friulana, l'esperienza migratoria oltreoceano, i rapporti con il contesto d'accoglienza, il Canada, le sue istituzioni e le sue tradizioni artistiche.
Anna Pia De Luca received degrees from the Universities of Toronto and Trieste. Before retirement she taught English Language and Literature at the University of Udine. She has published extensively in her main fields of interest: contemporary Canadian and ethnic female literature, Italian-Canadian literature, multiculturalism, migration and diaspora in Canada. She is co-editor of the volumes Palinsesti culturali: gli apporti delle immigrazioni alla letteratura del Canada (1999), Italy and Canadian Culture: Nationalisms in the New Millennium (2001), Shaping History: l’identità italo-canadese nel Canada anglofono (2005), Itinerranze e transcodificazioni. Scrittori migranti dal Friuli Venezia Giulia al Canada (2008), Transformations of the Canadian Cultural Mosaic (2012) and editor of Investigating Canadian Identities (2010). She is founding member and codirector of the journal Oltreoceano and of the ‘Centre for Canadian Culture Studies Series’. She is currently Director of the Centre for Canadian Culture at the University of Udine.