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(b Rignano sull'Arno, nr. Florence, 7 Apr. 1879; d Forte dei Marmi, nr. Viareggio, 18 Aug. 1964). Italian critic and painter. From 1900 to 1907 he spent his formative years in Paris, where he wrote for avant-garde periodicals and knew such figures as Apollinaire, Braque, Modigliani, and Picasso. In 1907 he settled in Florence and in the period before the First World War he was prominent in introducing the discussion of modern artâparticularly Cubismâto Italy. He championed the work of Medardo Rosso, but initially he was hostile to Futurism; however, under the influence of Boccioni and CarrĂ , he became converted to the movement in 1913. After the war his views became increasingly conservative and he joined CarrĂ and de Chirico in the attacks they made on Cubism and Futurism in the journal Valori plastici. Soffici's own work as a painter reflects his changing critical outlook, but it is not considered to have much independent merit. (Source: Oxford Dictionary of Art)
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