Biography

Guido Aloise was born in Fiumefreddo, Calabria, in 1925 and died in Rome in 1986.

Since childhood he proved his strong artistic talent, winning competitions for primary school children.

He moved to Rome in 1939, where he attended the Academy of Fine Arts with profit, although for a short period. The pressure of events and WWII induced him, even though he was very young, to look for a job, applying his artistic talent.

Already in 1950 he exhibited his works in collective shows: Via Margutta, Primavera Romana Trinit√† dei Monti, Tavolettisti Galleria San Marco, Exhibition “Amici del Cavallo” (1st prize), Foyer des Artistes (1st prize), Greccio “Nido del Corvo” (1st prize), Biennale d’Arte Sacra di Sora.

Receiving public and critical acclaim, from the 60s until his death, he held successful solo exhibitions in Italy and abroad: Palazzo delle Esposizioni – Rome, Galleria Scandenberg – Rome, Teatro Eliseo – Rome, La Marguttiana – Rome, Galleria “La Tana” – Belvedere, Galleria A.A.T. – L’Aquila, Gallery “98” – Cosenza, Gallery “La Ragnatela” – Tropea, Grand Hotel – Guardia Piemontese, Hotel Boston – Rome, Museum of Modern Art – Valletta (Malta), Cathedral Museum – Medina (Malta), Gallery “Apollo d’Oro” – Matera, Remo Croce Bookshop – Rome, Gallery “L’Autore” – Chieti.

Guido Aloise has donated several works to public institutions including: the homage of a “Head of Christ” to Pope Giovanni Paolo II in 1979; a mural in the Calabrian location of Fuscaldo Marina and two sketches on canvas for the apse mosaic of the Church of San Francesco di Paola in Catona (RC).

Fundamental works of his artistic life are: the fresco of the high altar in the Church of Sant’Aniello in Cosenza (m 6×9), monumental and wonderful representation of the Last Judgement; two paintings (m 3×6 cad.), having as subjects the Last Supper and the Deposition, on the apse of the Church of S.Maria Addolorata in Rome.

His continuous search for new forms of expression led him to try his hand at sculpture and the reproduction of his works on gold plates.

From Guido Aloise’s biography it is clear how this man pursued the dream of being a painter throughout his short life.

And for a long time, his artistic passion has coexisted with other professions, always related to his talent: technical-electronic designer at Autovox, film poster designer, illustrator of advertising “affiches”, photographer, even to try his hand as an actor of photo novels.

Then, since the regular contracts with gallery owners and art dealers were increasing, he decided, in 1976 (when he already had a family and three children), to be just a PAINTER, even with very precise characteristics.

Guido Aloise is self-taught, that is he attended the Academy of Fine Arts, but for a short time and never graduated.

Guido Aloise paints for an almost instinctual, emotional – I dare say “therapeutic” – need. His painting is a sort of psychological analysis, a psychiatrist’s couch, demonstrated by his great attention to the dream world.

Guido Aloise is not a “reckless” person. He doesn’t follow fashions, he’s not a radical chic, he doesn’t frequent the environments that matter or that make him a denouncing artist, he doesn’t do drugs, he doesn’t experiment extreme instruments. He follows the tradition of drawing, and this makes him unattractive to contemporary critics.

Placing Guido Aloise in a historical-artistic context is therefore difficult, because of what has already been said and for his solitary nature, for his lack of diplomacy, for his hatred of compromise and for his very low propensity for political fellowship, he becomes a wandering and unaligned figure.

These characteristics were undesirable in the intellectual Rome of that period, where “figurative painting” meant either decoration or political and propaganda painting.

The media and the elite of the critics granted visibility and consideration only to those who belonged to the categories or cursed painters, or to the members of certain political parties.

For this and much more, Guido Aloise deliberately isolated himself, he never belonged to groups, currents, circles. And this has had a price, dear to pay.

Nevertheless, the public and some attentive critics have always supported and admired his work: both when it was expressed in social themes, when it was a representation of dreams, and when it was figurative and aesthetic purity.

The spontaneity, sincerity and depth of his talent was perceived in every facet.

So much trust was placed in him that he was the object of numerous commissions for the decoration of secular and above all sacred places, not to forget the frescoes for the apses of Santa Maria Addolorata in Rome, Sant’Aniello in Cosenza and the mosaic for San Francesco di Paola in Catona (Reggio Calabria).

But let us now enter into the stylistic and content details of his production.

The constant themes, which we have previously stated, have been treated in a different way also on a chromatic level during the years of life and work.

The end of the Sixties and the first half of the Seventies are characterized by gloomy atmospheres, by a wide use of dark colours that expressed anguish and turmoil of that period so full of social conflicts and tragic events (“Gibellina”, “Cane solo”, “Minaccia nucleare”, “Il Cieco”, “Vita d’artista”).

Then with the end of the Seventies and the following Eighties, the palette lights up and the light makes its way into Aloise’s works, which become much brighter and, perhaps, safer even in drawing and brushstrokes (not by chance, he is now a “full-time” artist).

These are the artworks of his maturity.

Great space now has the paintings with a dreamlike character, because the dream, according to Guido Aloise, has always been a great source of inspiration. Many of his works are tales of the unconscious, where the fears and childhood trauma of the loss of the mother (experienced as abandonment) are clearly visible and recurrent.

These are the paintings where it is easier to find repeated symbols: from Pulcinella to Don Quixote, melancholy heroes and losers, often representations of himself as he loved to play the role of the misunderstood and lonely artist in his battles.

And in these works there is always a sad and, at the same time, refined atmosphere, just as he conceived the aesthetic, courtly and elitist value.

Throughout his artistic career he has maintained, then, a very strong bond with his native land, portraying it in the few landscapes and in the many oneiric and social denunciation compositions.

Therefore, “mother” Calabria is always present in Guido Aloise’s soul and memories.

He doesn’t follow fashions, he’s not a radical chic, he doesn’t frequent the environments that matter or that make him a denouncing artist, he doesn’t do drugs, he doesn’t experiment extreme instruments. He follows the tradition of drawing, and this makes him unattractive to contemporary critics.

Placing Guido Aloise in a historical-artistic context is therefore difficult, because for what has already been said and for his solitary nature, for his lack of diplomacy, for his hatred of compromise and for his very low propensity for political fellowship, he becomes a wandering and unaligned figure.

These characteristics were undesirable in the intellectual Rome of that period, where “figurative painting” meant either decoration or political and propaganda painting.

The media circus and the elite of the critics granted visibility and consideration only to those who belonged to the categories or cursed painters, or to the members of certain political parties.

For this and much more, Guido Aloise deliberately isolated himself, he never belonged to groups, currents, circles. And this has had a price, dear to pay.

And in these works there is always a sad and at the same time refined atmosphere, just as he conceived the aesthetic, courtly and elitist value.

Throughout his artistic career he has maintained, then, a very strong bond with his native land, portraying it in the few landscapes and in the many oneiric and social denunciation compositions.

Therefore, Calabria, conceived as a mother, is always present in Guido Aloise’s soul and memories.

And this umbilical cord will never break until his death, since it is continually strengthened by visits, at least annually, to his dear native land, Fiumefreddo Bruzio.