Italo Mus

Last updated
Italo Mus
Born(1892-04-04)4 April 1892
Died 15 May 1967(1967-05-15) (aged 75)
Nationality Italian
Education Academy of Fine Arts in Turin
Known for Painting
AwardsThe first prize of Young Painters 1910

Italo Mus (4 April 1892 15 May 1967) was an Italian painter.


Early years and family

Italo Mus was born in Chaméran, in the municipality of Châtillon to parents from the Aosta Valley. [1] His mother Martine Vallaise was from a noble family of Arnad; his father Eugène Mus was a sculptor from Torgnon. His earliest artistic training took place in his father's workshop where he learn woodcarving. In 1909, recommended by Lorenzo Delleani, he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Turin and followed the course of painting and drawing. Here his teachers included Giacomo Grosso, Paolo Gaidano, Luigi Onetti and Marchisio: artists faithful to the impressionist tradition, and who taught him the basics of art.

Aosta Valley Autonomous region of Italy

The Aosta Valley is a mountainous autonomous region in northwestern Italy. It is bordered by Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France, to the west, Valais, Switzerland, to the north and by the Metropolitan City of Turin in the region of Piedmont, Italy, to the south and east.

Arnad Comune in Aosta Valley, Italy

Arnad ; is a town and comune in the Aosta Valley region of northwestern Italy.

Torgnon Comune in Aosta Valley, Italy

Torgnon is a town and comune in the Aosta Valley region of north-western Italy.

In 1910, the International Center for the Fine Arts in Rome assembled some of the best known painters of the time, including Chagall, Raoul Dufy, Jean Cocteau and Picasso. This was the occasion when the young Mus first gained national recognition, being awarded first prize in the Young Painters’ Salon.

Rome Capital city and comune in Italy

Rome is the capital city and a special comune of Italy. Rome also serves as the capital of the Lazio region. With 2,872,800 residents in 1,285 km2 (496.1 sq mi), it is also the country's most populated comune. It is the fourth most populous city in the European Union by population within city limits. It is the centre of the Metropolitan City of Rome, which has a population of 4,355,725 residents, thus making it the most populous metropolitan city in Italy. Rome is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, within Lazio (Latium), along the shores of the Tiber. The Vatican City is an independent country inside the city boundaries of Rome, the only existing example of a country within a city: for this reason Rome has been often defined as capital of two states.

Raoul Dufy French artist

Raoul Dufy was a French Fauvist painter, brother of Jean Dufy. He developed a colorful, decorative style that became fashionable for designs of ceramics and textiles, as well as decorative schemes for public buildings. He is noted for scenes of open-air social events. He was also a draftsman, printmaker, book illustrator, scenic designer, a designer of furniture, and a planner of public spaces.

Jean Cocteau French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, boxing manager and filmmaker

Jean Maurice Eugène Clément Cocteau was a French poet, writer, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker. Cocteau is best known for his novel Les Enfants Terribles (1929), and the films The Blood of a Poet (1930), Les Parents Terribles (1948), Beauty and the Beast (1946) and Orpheus (1949). He was described as "one of [the] avant-garde's most successful and influential filmmakers" by AllMovie.


Although very committed to his native Aosta Valley, Mus spent short periods in 1913 working on fresco and restoration projects: first in Lyon and then in Lausanne and in Friesch near Brig in the Swiss the canton of Valais. He took part in the First World War, and while on leave he met Giuseppina Crenna. After the end of the war they married and in due course had four children.

Fresco Mural painting upon freshly laid lime plaster

Fresco is a technique of mural painting executed upon freshly laid, or wet lime plaster. Water is used as the vehicle for the dry-powder pigment to merge with the plaster, and with the setting of the plaster, the painting becomes an integral part of the wall. The word fresco is derived from the Italian adjective fresco meaning "fresh", and may thus be contrasted with fresco-secco or secco mural painting techniques, which are applied to dried plaster, to supplement painting in fresco. The fresco technique has been employed since antiquity and is closely associated with Italian Renaissance painting.

Lyon Prefecture and commune in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France

Lyon is the third-largest city and second-largest urban area of France. It is located in the country's east-central part at the confluence of the rivers Rhône and Saône, about 470 km (292 mi) south from Paris, 320 km (199 mi) north from Marseille and 56 km (35 mi) northeast from Saint-Étienne. Inhabitants of the city are called Lyonnais.

Lausanne Place in Vaud, Switzerland

Lausanne is a city in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, and the capital and biggest city of the canton of Vaud. The city is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva. It faces the French town of Évian-les-Bains, with the Jura Mountains to its north-west. Lausanne is located 62 kilometres northeast of Geneva.

In 1932 Mus was responsible for the Saint-Vincent war memorial. The work, modelled in clay and then cast in bronze in Milan, was of an Alpino holding a weapon in his hand and with a fallen comrade across his knees. No trace of this monument remains: it was melted down in 1940 when its metal was needed for the war effort.

Clay A finely-grained natural rock or soil material that combines one or more clay minerals

Clay is a finely-grained natural rock or soil material that combines one or more clay minerals with possible traces of quartz (SiO2), metal oxides (Al2O3, MgO etc.) and organic matter. Geologic clay deposits are mostly composed of phyllosilicate minerals containing variable amounts of water trapped in the mineral structure. Clays are plastic due to particle size and geometry as well as water content, and become hard, brittle and non–plastic upon drying or firing. Depending on the soil's content in which it is found, clay can appear in various colours from white to dull grey or brown to deep orange-red.

Casting Manufacturing process

Casting is a manufacturing process in which a liquid material is usually poured into a mold, which contains a hollow cavity of the desired shape, and then allowed to solidify. The solidified part is also known as a casting, which is ejected or broken out of the mold to complete the process. Casting materials are usually metals or various time setting materials that cure after mixing two or more components together; examples are epoxy, concrete, plaster and clay. Casting is most often used for making complex shapes that would be otherwise difficult or uneconomical to make by other methods.

Bronze metal alloy

Bronze is an alloy consisting primarily of copper, commonly with about 12–12.5% tin and often with the addition of other metals and sometimes non-metals or metalloids such as arsenic, phosphorus or silicon. These additions produce a range of alloys that may be harder than copper alone, or have other useful properties, such as stiffness, ductility, or machinability.

In 1938 the art critic Guido Marangoni saw Mus’s works in his studio and was impressed enough to write an article in the art journal Perseo , describing him as a “highly talented painter.” For a time he worked in his studio at Saint-Vincent with Filippo De Pisis. In 1956 some of his paintings were shown in New York City and Buenos Aires.

Art critic person who specializes in evaluating art

An art critic is a person who is specialized in analyzing, interpreting and evaluating art. Their written critiques or reviews contribute to art criticism and they are published in newspapers, magazines, books, exhibition brochures and catalogues and on web sites. Some of today's art critics use art blogs and other online platforms in order to connect with a wider audience and expand debate about art.

Filippo De Pisis Italian painter

Filippo De Pisis was an Italian painter and poet.

New York City Largest city in the United States

The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.

In the mid-1960s, while still active, he fell victim to a serious disease which prevented him from continuing to work. Italo Mus died in Saint-Vincent on 15 May 1967.


Mus created about two thousand works: drawings, sketches, and paintings of subjects. For most of his life he used oil on canvas or panel. His activity consists of three clearly defined periods.


His long and laborious work was rewarded by many prizes: the Prix Saint-Vincent (1922-1947-1949), the Prix de la Montagne (‘Prize of the Mountain’, Milan 1927), the Premio Einaudi (1950), the Premio Consiglio dei Ministri (‘Italian Cabinet Prize’, Rome 1959), and the Premio Nazionale d'Arte Sacra (‘National Award for Sacred Art’, Rome 1960).

In 1979 the director Gianpaolo Taddeini made a fictionalised version of Mus’s life, based on a text by Ugo Ronfani, for the RAI-Aosta Valley television station: A valley, a Painter: Italo Mus.

Selected works



  1. Crivellari, Giulio (2012-10-30). "A Châtillon omaggio a Italo Mus". La Stampa . Retrieved 2016-03-13.

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