Volpi was born in Lucca in Italy but his family soon moved to Brazil and he worked as an artisan decorator in Sao Paulo. In 1950 he embarked on a Grand Tour of Italy discovering Byzantine art and on his return to Brazil his painting evolved, oscillating between references to ‘concrete’ and naive folk art.
The painting on offer at Aguttes dates from Volpi’s concrete period in the 1950s when he began to concentrate on geometric shapes, in particular the patterns of Bandeirinhas – flags featured on garlands stretched across the street during the Festas Junius devoted to St John the Baptist.
The flag gradually become his best-known motif and is represented in this large canvas, in light and pastel shades, which dates from c.1958. The work was acquired directly from the artist by the grandfather of the owner and has remained in the family since.