Italian Coloratura Soprano Amelita Galli-Curci
MediumPastel on paper
Credit LineMuseum purchase, 2014
Dimensions12 1/2 x 8 in.
Description & Inscriptions
An Italophile through and through, Oakley traveled to Italy many times, studying the art of the nation’s Renaissance and embracing the grace and beauty of its culture. In the aftermath of World War I, through her friend Mary Nixon, principal of the Florentine School, Oakley was commissioned to make posters for the Italian Relief Auxiliary of the American Red Cross in Chicago. She designed two posters directed at concertgoers and art lovers. This one reproduces her portrait of Amelita Galli-Curci, the world-famous coloratura soprano from Milan who joined the Chicago Opera Company in 1916. Inscribed to the artist “Per il sentimento fraterno che vi unisce alla mia patria” (“For the fraternal feeling that unites you to my homeland”) and dated 1918, Oakley probably drew the portrait from life that winter, when Galli-Curci performed with the Metropolitan Opera Company.