The Futurist movement began in Italy in 1909 with the publication of the original Futurist Manifesto by F.T. Marinetti. The movement encapsulated the feelings of lost artists before World War I by revamping the way people viewed art, literature, and theatre. The Futurists wanted to move away from any form of traditional art, and “want(ed) to demolish museums and libraries.”[1] Along with demolishing traditional styles, the Futurists saw value in the aggression and violence of war, and felt that Italy needed to advance on the world’s stage. Futurists saw war as purifying and “the only cure for the world.”[2]

Futurists utilized speed and technology in their works, which created a dynamic message of industrialization. They saw the automobile as a symbol of this speed that was both physical and ideological. For example, Boccioni paints his work, States of Mind, to portray this idea of speed by painting a series of depictions detailing people’s experience in a train station. Other artists, such as Giacomo Balla, used his paintings to show how objects move; one of the objects that he focused on was the automobile. The Futurists believed that the industrial revolution would revitalize Italy and would make it a more modern country.


[1] F.T. Marinetti, The Futurist Manifesto, 1909

[2] ibid.

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