Giovanni Segantini


Pointillist in Maloja. In 1858, Giovanni Segantini was born in Arco, which, at the time, belonged to Austria. In 1894, he and his family moved to Bregaglia.

By the age of 36, Segantini had lived in many places, but it was Maloja, where the purity of the light was special and inspiring, that his creativity reached its peak. As the main representative of Italian Pointillism, Segantini preferred rustic themes of the untouched majestic mountain world of Maloja, Soglio, where he wintered, and Engadin. These themes are reflected in his works. The wonderful portrait of a "Women of Grisons at the fountain" (1887) shows that he was equally interested in the people.

In Bregaglia, Segantini befriended fellow painter Giovanni Giacometti, father of the famous Alberto Giacometti. Occasionally, the two artists would paint together at Giovanni's studio in Maloja. The studio was designed to be a scaled model of the Engadin Pavilion, forseen for the Universal Exhibition of 1900. The round structure for the Exhibition would have measured 70 meters in diameter. Segantini wanted to paint an Engadin Panorama for the Pavillion. However, due to economic hardship, Segantini was unable to complete this gigantic pictorial representation.

Nevertheless, the Engadin Pavillion project gave Segantini the impetus to create his Alpine Triptych (or Nature Triptych), his most famous work, which hangs in the Segantini Museum in St. Moritz. The three paintings Nature, Life and Death respectively depict the alpine landscape of Soglio, twilight as seen from Schafberg in Engadin and the winter landscape of Maloja.

Today, visitors can visit Segantini's studio in Maloja and walk the Segantini path, which passes by the family grave.


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