The yearly magazine “Novissima. Albo d’Arti e Lettere” was first published in 1901, thanks to British-Florentine intellectual and art expert Edoardo De Fonseca (1867-1936).
According to Gianni Scipione Rossi, De Fonseca wished to “provide a yearly review of all the best that had been produced in the various fields of art, from poetry to literature, from music to figurative arts. All by engaging the best of Italy’s intellectual powers.”
It was not easy. “In 1900,” Rossi says, “Edoardo traveled across the country in search of good collaborators. ‘My propaganda tour,’ he recalled, ‘was not only meant to canvass artists, but also to ask for the help of the most important Italian writers’.”
He succeeded. “Edoardo networked with some of his time’s best, and made being published on ‘Novissima’ necessary to both achieve and certify their success. Among others, he was close to Giovanni Pascoli. The authors who wrote for ‘Novissima’ included Benedetto Croce, Grazia Deledda, Antonio Fogazzaro, Edmondo De Amicis, Giuseppe Giacosa, Sem Benelli, Luigi Capuana, Trilussa, Renato Fucini, Ugo Ojetti, and Luigi Pirandello. The magazine collected ideas and inspired the world of figurative arts especially” (G. Scipione Rossi, “Storia di Alice. La Giovanna d’Arco di Mussolini”, Rubbettino, Soveria Mannelli 2010).
“Novissima” unfortunately lasted only a decade: the last issue was published in 1910. Her are the ten splendid covers in its history.