Saturday, March 5, 2016


March 05, 1696. Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (March 5, 1696 - March 27, 1770), also known as Gianbattista or Giambattista Tiepolo, was an Italian painter and printmaker from the Republic of Venice. He was prolific, and worked not only in Italy, but also in Germany and Spain. In this image: Two employees carry a rediscovered painting by Giambattista Tiepolo, titled 'Portrait of a lady as Flora', as they prepare to put it on display at Christie's auction house in London, Friday, Nov. 28, 2008. The painting lost for over 200 years and found in the attic of a French chateau is to be auctioned in a sale on Dec. 2, and is expected to fetch between GBP 700,000 to 900,000 pounds (USD 1.1 to 1.4 million; euro 836,000 to 1.1 million

Born into a wealthy and noble family in Venice, Giambattista Tiepolo was recognized by contemporaries throughout Europe as the greatest painter of large-scale decorative frescoes in the 1700s. He was admired for having brought fresco painting to new heights of technical virtuosity, illumination, and dramatic effect. Tiepolo possessed an imagination characterized by one of his contemporaries as "all spirit and fire.”

Apollo pursuing Daphne
A gifted storyteller, Tiepolo painted walls and ceilings with large, expansive scenes of intoxicating enchantment. In breath-taking visions of mythology and religion, the gods and saints inhabit light-filled skies. His ability to assimilate his predecessor and compatriot Paolo Veronese's use of color was so profound that his contemporaries named him Veronese redivio (a new Veronese).

Reynoldo enchanted by Armida
Tiepolo's commissions came from the old established families of Italy, religious orders, and the royal houses of Spain, Germany, Sweden, and Russia. His frescoes adorn palaces, churches, and villas, and his artistic legacy consists of some eight hundred paintings, 2,400 drawings, two sets of etchings, and acres of fresco. When Tiepolo died at the age of seventy-four, a Venetian diarist noted the "bitter loss" of "the most famous Venetian painter, truly the most renowned...well known in Europe and the most highly praised in his native land."

The Met
National Gallery of Art

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