Artists

Leoni engraved and published a series of portraits of ten artists (including Leoni himself) within polygonal printed frames, between 1621 and 1625. In his will, Leoni left the printing plates for this set, together with those for the set of Writers, to his son Ippolito, who was also an artist. They later appeared in Portraits of some painters of the seventeenth century, designed and engraved in copper by Cavalier Ottavio Lioni, with the lives of the same taken from various authors with added annotations (Rome, 1731).


Cavaliere Giuseppe Cesare of Arpino,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7929-R"]

Engraving, 1621

Known as Cavaliere d'Arpino (1568-1640) after his birthplace and the knighthood awarded by Pope Clement VIII (1592-1605). He wears the Order of the Cross of Christ in this portrait. He was Clement's principal painter, but fared less well under Paul V (1605-21). In 1607 Cardinal Scipione Borghese had him arrested and confiscated his collection of paintings, which still hangs in the Galleria Borghese. This included works by Caravaggio, who worked in his studio in the 1590s before the two became rivals. Both artists were friends of the poet Marino.

This is technically close to early prints, such as the first portrait of Baglione, and less developed than later prints in this series. It was probably based on a drawing dated May 1621 (Kestner Museum, Hannover).

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7929-R


Cavaliere Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini of Naples,
sculptor

Image["Object Number P.7925-R"]

Engraving, 1622

Bernini (1598-1680) trained in his father's studio and made his first work for Cardinal Scipione Borghese at the age of ten. Another early patron was Cardinal Maffeo Barberini, who later became Pope Urban VIII and employed Bernini as architect and sculptor to transform St Peter's. Pope Gregory XV knighted Bernini in 1621 in reward for sculpting his portrait (Bernini wears the order of a Knight of the Cross of Christ in this print).

At the date of this portrait, Bernini had just completed his marble group of Pluto and Proserpine for Scipione Borghese, who gave it to Cardinal Ludovisi. He was already in demand for his portrait busts; initially influenced by Leoni, he developed portraiture further in his 'speaking likeness' busts of the following decade.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7925-R

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Cavaliere Cristoforo Roncalli of Pomerance,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7940-R"]

Engraving, 1623

Roncalli (1552-1626) was known as 'il Pomarancio' after his birthplace near Volterra. He trained in Florence and worked in Siena before coming to Rome by 1582. In 1597 he was working for Pope Clement VIII on the decoration of St Peter's, collaborating with Cavaliere d'Arpino and designing mosaics that were carried out by Marcello Provenzale. From 1605 he received important commissions to decorate the basilica of S. Maria at Loreto with cycles of frescoes. In 1606 he accompanied Marchese Vincenzo Giustiniani on a tour of Germany, Flanders, France and England.

In this portrait Roncalli wears the cross of a Knight of the Cross of Christ, which he was awarded in 1607.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7940-R


Marcello Provenzale of Cento,
inventor of new techniques of wall mosaic

Image["Object Number P.7937-R"]

Engraving, 1623

Provenzale (1575-1639) came from a leading family in Cento. In Rome he became known as a mosaic artist admired for his refinement of technique. He worked at St Peter's for Clement VIII (1592-1605), working to designs of Cavaliere d'Arpino and Cristofano Roncalli. Under the papacy of Paul V he enjoyed the favour of Cardinal-Nephew Scipione Borghese. He made mosaic portraits of Scipione as Orfeo (1618) and of Paul V (1621).

Provenzale was a witness at Leoni's marriage in 1616 and was named as executor in his will. Leoni had made a drawing of him as early as 1614 (Städelsches Institut, Frankfurt). This print is based on a drawing dated March 1623 (Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe).

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7937-R

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Giovanni Francesco Barbieri of Cento,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7924-R"]

Engraving, 1623

Barbieri (1591-1666) was known as Guercino ('squinter'), due to his pronounced squint. His early work in Cento included the decoration of Casa Provenzale, for the family of Marcello Provenzale. Marcello commissioned a work from Guercino to be sent to Rome in 1618. Another early patron was Alessandro Ludovisi, Bishop of nearby Bologna. When Alessandro was elected Pope Gregory XV in 1621 he summoned Guercino to Rome. One of his major Roman works was the fresco of Aurora on the ceiling of the garden casino of the Ludovisi villa, painted in 1621 for Gregory's Cardinal-Nephew Ludovico Ludovisi.

With the death of Gregory XV in 1623, Guercino returned to Cento, soon after this print was made.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7924-R


Antonio Tempesta of Florence,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7943-R"]

Engraving, 1623

Tempesta (1555-1630) was in Rome by 1572 when he was painting frescoes in the Vatican palace for Pope Gregory XIII. Influenced by Netherlandish artists, he specialised in epic landscape settings for hunting and battle scenes. Between 1589 and 1627 he made over 1400 etchings, which were widely circulated and influential - for instance, his illustrations of Ovid's Metamorphoses were used by Guercino as sources for his frescoes made in Cento in 1615-17.

Tempesta also received commissions from Cardinal Maurizio of Savoy, whom he depicted in 1620 in a painting of the tournament celebrating the marriage of Maurizio's brother to Henri IV's daughter, a marriage negotiated in Paris by Maurizio.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7943-R

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Simon Vouet of France,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7944-R"]

Engraving, 1625

Vouet (1590-1649) was in Rome by 1614, and early Roman patrons included Paolo Giordano Orsini. In 1621 Vouet sought the patronage of Cardinal Maurizio of Savoy in relation to drawings he made for Claude Mellan's engraved Allegory of the House of Savoy. Vouet painted a portrait of the new pope Urban VIII in 1623; he had already painted the pope's nephew, Cardinal Francesco Barberini. At the time this print was made Vouet was working on a commission for the pope at St Peter's. The engraving is based on a drawing dated April 1625 (Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe).

In 1627 Vouet was summoned back to France by Louis XIII to become the king's principal painter.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7944-R


Cavaliere Giovanni Baglione of Rome,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7919-R"]

Engraving, 1625

Baglione (1566-1644) enjoyed a considerable career as a painter and draughtsman, with important commissions, but he is probably best remembered for his book, Lives of Painters, sculptors and Architects (Rome, 1642), which is one of the principal sources of information on art and artists from 1572 to 1642.

In 1603 Baglione brought a libel suit accusing Caravaggio of circulating scurrilous verses disparaging Baglione as a painter. Baglione was supported by Mao Salini who said that Leoni had been Caravaggio's accomplice in sending the verses to him.

As in Leoni's earlier portrait of Baglione, he wears the cross of a Knight (Cavaliere) of the Cross of Christ, which was awarded to him in 1606.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7919-R

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Cavaliere Ottavio Leoni of Rome,
painter

Image["Object Number P.7916-R"]

Engraving, 1625

As in the earlier self-portrait, Leoni wears the cross of a Knight (Cavaliere) of the Cross of Christ. The related drawing in the Biblioteca Marucelliana is a variant of two other drawings, both dated May 1624 and with sequential numbers in Leoni's numbering system (British Museum, London, and Staatliche Kunsthalle, Karlsruhe). Leoni's hair and the fullness of his face are changed in the engraving, perhaps representing a fresh look at himself in 1625.

There exists an earlier state without the stippled background (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), but it is only in this finished state that it makes its full impact, with the consummate mastery of engraving texture and form that Leoni achieved by 1625.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7916-R


Ludovico Leoni of Padua,
painter and celebrated sculptor of all portraits

Image["Object Number P.7932-R"]

Engraving, 1625

The artist's father Ludovico (1542-1612) was known from his birthplace as 'il Padovanino', a nickname also applied to his son. He is the only subject in this series not living when the engraving was made. The print records the date 1612, which may be the year that the drawing was made, or may refer to the year of Ludovico's death.

Ludovico went to work in Rome, where Baglione records that he was 'distinguished during the time of Pope Paul V [1605-21], for his portraits in wax relief, almost always alla macchia, which is so called because they are done seeing the subject only once, and rapidly, in which field he was renowned.' Ludovico also made medals and engraved seals.

Given by John Charrington 1933

P.7932-R


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The Fitzwilliam Museum : Artists

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