AN ATTENTIVE AND KEEN DISCIPLE|
Vittorio Manini (1888-1974) attendend the Accademia Carrara of Bergamo from 1902 to 1910, one of the most important Italian academies of art, under the guidance of Ponziano Loverini (1845-1929). His fellow-students were important artists like Natale Morzenti, Giovanni Marini, Pietro Servalli, Angiolo Alebardi, Vanni Rossi, Edmondo Cattaneo, Giorgio Oprandi. During his studies he received several awards and honourable mentions after the plaster, anatomy and perspective courses, the statues school and the nude course. In 1910 he exhibited his works at the Triennale di Belle Arti of the Accademia Carrara and in 1912 he exposed his works at the "Permanente" of Milan.
At the end of the year 1910 he was summoned by the Army for his military service, which will be run in Rome, and it was actually in the capital city that he started having his first contacts with the most important vanguards of the beginning of the century. As a matter of fact, during his free time, he succeeded in visiting the most illustrious museums and monuments and, above all, the great International Exhibition, where he got to know the art of Balla, Casorati, Nomellini, Noci, Menzel, Rodin, Mestovic, etc.
THE ROMAN SECESSION
At the end of the military service, he stayed in Lugano - Switzerland - for a short time. There he could make himself known to a larger public, and by the end of the year 1914 he was awarded a scholarship offered by the special board of the Accademia Carrara, which allowed him to attend the famous school of Nude in Rome.
His return to Rome, the city he had got to know a few years earlier, allowed him to go deeper into the themes of European vanguard art and to establish very strong ties with the main representatives of the "Roman Secession", especially with the sculptor Publio Morbiducci. This was a lively and fruitful period for Manini who produced small works, oils, pastels and drawings, featuring incredible exquisiteness and fearlessness, in the purest expressionist style.
THE GREAT WAR
Unfortunately, in the spring of 1915, he was summoned to join the army and fight in the Great War, hence he was forced to abruptly interrupt the period that was certainly the most important one for his artistic formation.
During the war he produced a countless number of drawings that witness the daily life of the soldiers on the Friuli front, portraits of fellow-soldiers, landscapes of war posts and of the Friuli countryside, made with such a skill and mastery of the drawing technique that some of them were purchased by the Municipality of Milan as an important historical testimony of that period of time.
BACK IN BERGAMO
In 1919 he was discharged and, once back in Bergamo, started an intense artistic activity that lasted until the end of the thirties; he exhibited his works at the "Permanente" of Milan in 1924, at the Accademia di Brera of Milan in 1927, was awarded a prize at the Triennale held at the Accademia Carrara in 1929.
THE HOLY ART AND THE FRESCO
At the beginning of the thirties, he started making holy paintings, with hundreds of works for the most important parish churches of the province of Bergamo. He also became a skilled fresco painter - a difficult art that was not much pursued by the artists of that time - as he painted vaults and façades of important palaces and churches of Lombardy. An impressive fresco is the one that can be found on the vault of the Parish Church of Trescore Balneario, which caused him to receive several awards all over Italy, among which the Diploma d'Onore by the Galleria Permanente d'Arte Sacra of Assisi.
In 1958 he painted a "Madonna with Child", which was commissioned to him by the Prince Ranieri of Monaco. In 1961 he took part at the Biennale Italiana d'Arte Sacra Exhibition held at the Angelicum of Milan.