Italian futurism and the machine

By Katia Pizzi

Italian futurism and the machine


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-9709-6
  • Pages: 320
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £85.00
  • Published Date: May 2019
  • BIC Category: Italy, Engineering skills & trades, Italy: post First World War period & Fascism (1918–1943), ART / History / Modern (late 19th Century to 1945), HISTORY / Social History, Humanities / Social & cultural history, The arts / History of art & design styles: from c 1900 -, Art History, Social & cultural history, Modernism


This is the first interdisciplinary exploration of machine culture in Italian futurism after the First World War. The machine was a primary concern for the futuristi. As well as being a material tool in the factory it was a social and political agent, an aesthetic emblem, a metonymy of modernity and international circulation and a living symbol of past crafts and technologies. Exploring literature, the visual and performing arts, photography, music and film, the book uses the lens of European machine culture to elucidate the work of a broad set of artists and practitioners, including Censi, Depero, Marinetti, Munari and Prampolini. The machine emerges here as an archaeology of technology in modernity: the time machine of futurism.


'This book will be especially valuable to scholars of modernist visual and performing arts, though anyone invested in discourses about modernist machine culture and technology will find much to admire in Pizzi's book.'
The Modernist Review

'The book contains plenty of fascinating information, and for this reason it will undoubtedly be useful to anybody interested in Futurism and its artistic and ideological attitude to the machine.'
International Yearbook of Futurism


Introduction: the rape of Europa
1 Futurismo and the machine
2 Mechanic machi(ni)smo: Filippo Tommaso Marinetti
3 Style of steel: Fortunato Depero in 'dynamoland'
4 At the frontier of futurismo
5 Between technodialogism and cosmic idealism
6 From aerodancing technobodies to dysfunctional machines
Conclusion: ex machina


Katia Pizzi is Senior Lecturer in Italian Studies at the Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study, University of London.

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