Flex Mentallo

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Everything posted by Flex Mentallo

  1. With the outbreak of World War I he became a war artist and spent nearly five years at the front drawing hundreds of sketches, which he would later translate into photo-realistic, large sized pictures for the leading periodicals. His work was admired by military experts and critics alike for his technical accomplishment and scrupulous accuracy.
  2. Matania was an expert at depicting historical scenes from all periods of history, as well as specific, current news events, with startling realism and precision for the time. His illustrations for The Sphere depicting the sinking of the Titanic on April 15, 1912 have been cited as an early exemplar. This image, "Women and Children First" transfixed the public when it appeared in 1912.
  3. Fortunino illustrated his first book at the age of fourteen, and from about that age, his pictures were published every week in Illustrazione Italiana [1895-1902]. Moving to London, he worked for The Graphic [1901-1904]. After returning to Italy for military service he came back to London at the age of twenty-four and joined the staff of The Sphere, and spent the rest of his life in England.
  4. Matania was a child prodigy, with a photographic memory and the ability to reproduce startlingly real scenes.
  5. Born in Naples in 1881, Matania's early training in art came from his father, who was also an artist. His father, Eduardo's pictures were often anecdotal depictions of contemporary scenes, and clearly influenced much of his son's later work.
  6. He was invited to accompany King George V and Queen Mary to India when they were installed as King-Emperor and Queen-Empress at the Delhi Durbar of 1911. Matania's resourcefulness on such occasions was also in a league unto itself. Such was the multitude of troops and onlookers at the event that there was little space allocated to the press. The majority of them were obliged to observe the proceedings through binoculars as the distant dignitaries shimmered and eddied into the searing heat. Matania, who had mapped out his preparatory work at the dress rehearsal, nevertheless wanted to get as close to the action as possible and managed to secure a position at the foot of the steps leading up to the Royal thrones. To ensure he remained as unobtrusive as possible, he had secured himself an Army uniform, remained rigidly at attention as he committed the whole scene in all its pomp and splendour to his photographic memory. Peter Richardson
  7. Here is another in an occasional sequence depicting 'book discoveries', though given that Matania illustrated works by Edgar Rice Boroughs, I'd be very surprised if his work has not previously been 'discovered' by many of my fellow boardies long before!
  8. Drawing from History: The Forgotten Art of Fortunino Matania. Fortunino Matania 1881-1963
  9. My message for the New Year [for what's its worth]. There are no Captain Americas here to rely on. Man or woman, each of us must behave as heroes should. Follow your conscience, make a difference, however you can. And if you want, share it here.
  10. Thanks Mike! I meant to post these in July, but stuff happened! Have a great New Year!
  11. Now Life's uncertainty has carried me away from them once again. I wonder when my 'adopted' family and I will meet again?
  12. South of Puri is the bustling port city of Visakhapatnam , also known as Vizak. It is a place Indian tourists congregate in their tens of thousands, but foreigners rarely go.