Game Of Checkers
Louis Monza lived from
1897 to 1984, near Turate, Italy.
Artist Louis Monza
- The self taught artist Louis Monza, was
raised in Northern Italy but immigrated
to the USA in 1913 at age 16.
- As a young man, Louis Monza was an apprentice
to a master furniture carver and carpenter.
- Monza traveled in the U.S. and Mexico
observing scenes with an artist’s
eye; he settled in Redondo Beach, California
and later married his wife, Heidi in 1946.
- As pacifist and socialist, artist Louis
Monza had no desire to fight in any war,
but unfortunately, he was drafted into
the U.S. Army during World War I and served
in Panama and when he was released from
service, Monza became a house painter;
only after an accident in 1938 where he
fell from a scaffolding while painting
and suffered a spinal injury did Louis
Monza pursue an active career as an artist
while recovering from the fall.
- While recuperating, Louis
Monza experimented with a variety of media,
though drawings and oil paintings were
the first expressions of his ideas and philosophies.
- In 1941, Monza's career as an exhibited
artist began in New York and in 1946 he
moved into ceramics, bronze sculptures
and printmaking, which included monotypes
and linocuts, some of which were printed on rice paper.
- Louis Monza's subjects were
varied from landscapes to political allegories
and social criticism to genre and figure
scene; Monza also created some spiritual
paintings, though he was not interested in organized religion.
- His artistic style embraced themes in Naïve, Pop
and Folk art with a touch of Surrealism.
- Artist Louis Monza's early works were
clumsy’, yet some of his
themes were also considered to be a rather
violent expression of his own idealism
in which the pacifist embraced radical
socialist doctrines; his mature motifs
depicted the dreams of an idyllic world
where human and animal cohabit and thrive
the elements together.
- Louis Monza had a natural concern for the human condition
and some of his early depictions gave voice to a political and
social anger from deep within and this theme was evident in
his allegorical paintings executed during World War II.
- Artist Monza's exposure to northern Italy's
painting traditions and his experience
with the furniture craftsman influenced
the decorative detail, dramatic color
and volumetric, exaggerated forms of his mature creations.
- Checkers in Florida,
depicted in a stylized fashion a woman
at a checkerboard looking at other checker
players in the background and the setting
might resemble a game of checkers national
tourney that has been a popular meeting
ground for checkerists for many years.
- The game of checkers motif was represented
in a simplistic manner through the use
of bold colors and contrasting decorative
patterns, but a relaxed mood was also readily
conveyed in this typical genre scene of
human leisure; this was his favored artist
style until his death in 1984.
"Checkers in Florida" made in 1947,
by Game of Checkers artist Louis Monza.