Ulvi Liegi (Biographical details)

Ulvi Liegi (printmaker; painter/draughtsman; Italian; Male; 1858 - 1939)

Also known as

Liegi, Ulvi; Levi, Luigi


Painter and printmaker; born in Livorno, trained and worked in Florence.
(Text by Martin Hopkinson) From a well to do family of Jewish bankers, Luigi Mosè Levi took the name Ulvi Liegi as an artist. He studied with Adolfo Tommasi, Carlo Markò and Giuseppe Ciranfi at the Accademia dei Belle Arti in Florence. Liegi was a frequent visitor to Fattori's studio in the early 1880s, commissioned one of that artist's finest paintings 'Ploughing', which was exhibited in Florence in 1882 and assembled a fine collection of his pictures. Signorini, who encouraged him to paint out of doors, was the most significant influence on his early work. Liegi went to Paris in 1886 and became acquainted with the Impressionists. He also crossed the Channel where he met Whistler and studied the work of the Pre-Raphaelites. In 1895 Liegi settled in Florence, becoming a close friend of Fattori and joining the circle of artists and writers who frequented the Caffè Michelangiolo. The colours in his paintings of the Tuscan landscape became higher in key after his visit to France, and some have seen in his work the influence of the Pont Aven school. In the latter part of his career Liegi turned to Jewish subjects and organized a museum of Judaica. He also devoted much of his time to the promotion of Livornese art through the Gruppo Labronico, of which he was elected president for life in 1920. His birth date is sometimes given as 1859, but according to the 2015 edition of De Gruyter he was born 11 October 1858.


See Vivian B. Mann, 'Gardens and Ghettos. The Art of Jewish Life in Italy', New York, 1989.
De Gruyter
A monograph by Giuliano Matteucci, 'Ulvi Liegi', Florence, 1970 provides a useful corpus of illustrations of his paintings.