It is a pictorial genre cultivated by the artist since his early youth trials in the span of over half a century. In Levi’s iconographic universe, the nude plays a special role for the multiplicity of subtext, ranging from portrait to landscape, passing through biblical and mythological references, to embrace the erotic tale and the reflection on birth and death.
The landscape is the other constant theme in the figurative production of Levi, who, from 1926 to 1974, used to paint the places where he lived: Turin, Alassio, Paris, Lucania and Rome. These are natural and urban landscapes that represent a biographical and existential journey, but also a particular vision of the bond between man and landscape; landscapes with which Levi experienced a deeply emotional relationship.
The portrait is one of the most frequent subject in the pictorial production of Carlo Levi and constitutes, indeed, a theme whose theoretical meaning has been analyzed by the painter in large series of writings. In his vast production we find portraits that not only come from the family sphere, but also represent models of illustrious personalities of Italian and foreign culture and politics.