Seen by T.Paloscia

Pietro Pecorari
The story
Seen by T.Paloscia
The gallery
San Martino
Books and art prints








Pietro Pecorari’s artistic itinerary appears like an assemblage of huge efforts, i.e. of commitments sustained laboriously by the strong will and the very sharp intelligence which were the outstanding features of a peasant’s race that has been dispersed in the meantime: lost forever maybe in the globalization of the human species (…)

It is necessary to bear in mind that Pecorari actually was born a peasant (…) and though he had very little time to spare, he used this spare time of his to express the poetry he carried inside of him with blank verses and drawings (…) inspired by his fantasy.

I remember when in a criminal lawsuit in Florence many years ago (…) a peasant from the Mugello was able to testify only after he had been authorized by the judge to express himself  in verses, following the rhythm of a singsong of which he bat the time drumming his fingers upon the wooden bar of the witness-box. This image appeared distinctly in my memory when I met for the first time the ”naïf painter” Pecorari in the Arno Gallery in Florence, then run by Wanda Papini who exhibited his paintings with great enthusiasm. This was in 1969.

His was an art of painting full of irony and ambiguity whose stylish primitivism became autonomous and then very hilarious in the verbal illustrations furnished by the painter: a wise and humble man: a simple and honest spirit, a poet speaking through images; images as enthralling as icons transferred into those blank verses that opened up ever new windows into the infinite, in an imaginary world that was always crowded and full of life. Certainly a peasant of times past who however showed as much as he deemed right of his ambition to rise to a higher social level and to the enchanted peaks of notoriety, a goal both obsessively aimed at and yet bashfully not confessed.

Many years have gone by since, but that Pecorari wasn’t wrong I realized as I followed, step by step, the evolution of his style which today is no longer primitive as h has broken into the area of refined painting with surreal figures which are perfectly fitted into an “other” world between dream and reality.

Today’s images are perfect both for their structures of composition and their motifs, as testified by the ink drawings on the subject of musical notes from the 90’s. They were represented in an ideal and not described pentatonic stave.

Now I understood that the naivetèe had definitively abandoned his art of painting which in the meantime had ventured into the tender mellowness of a mature palette of a technique which concedes nothing to the elementary playfulness of the child’s istinct. He had given up painting to take shelter in memory’s last rampart of a time spent marvellously: in the blank verses of the poetries which remained unchanged in form and content, still bound to ingenounsness; and in captions that often do not respect the grammar out of a barely hidden coquetry because the boy has grown up, yes, but he is also a – voluntary- prisoner of the enchanted world of his childhood.


Tommaso Paloscia,

Florence, Novembre 2000