The Triumph of the City


 









The High Renaissance
 
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Mannerism
 
 



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S
chool of Fontainebleau

 

Primaticcio

 

 
                
   
Fontainebleau school

[Fr. Ecole de Fontainebleau].

Term that encompasses work in a wide variety of media, including painting, sculpture, stuccowork and printmaking, produced from the 1530s to the first decade of the 17th century in France. It evokes an unreal and poetic world of elegant, elongated figures, often in mythological settings, as well as incorporating rich, intricate ornamentation with a characteristic type of strapwork. The phrase was first used by Adam von Bartsch in Le Peintre-graveur (21 vols, Vienna, 1803–21), referring to a group of etchings and engravings, some of which were undoubtedly made at Fontainebleau in France. More generally, it designates the art made to decorate the château of Fontainebleau, built from 1528 by Francis I and his successors, and by extension it covers all works that reflect the art of Fontainebleau.  With the re-evaluation of MANNERISM in the 20th century, the popularity of the Fontainebleau school has increased hugely. There has also been an accompanying increase in the difficulty of defining the term precisely. 

 

                      
                    

Primaticcio

born April 30, 1504, Bologna, Emilia [Italy]
died 1570, Paris, Fr.


also called Bologna, Le Primatice, or Primadizzi Italian Mannerist painter, architect, and leader of the first school of Fontainebleau.

Primaticcio studied with Giulio Romano and assisted him in his work on the decorations of the Palazzo del Te in Mantua. When the French king Francis I invited Romano to assist in the redecoration of the Fontainebleau Palace in 1531, Romano sent Primaticcio in his place, and, once there, Primaticcio became one of the principal artists in France.

In his initial work at Fontainebleau, Primaticcio employed a decorative style that combined stucco work and mural painting. He returned to Rome for a couple of years to purchase artworks for Francis I, and on his return he decorated the Cabinet du Roi with a series of paintings, now lost, that flouted rational perspective in painting and stressed the primacy of the human figure. Primaticcio's stylistic use of exaggerated musculature and active, elongated figures in these works was to exert great influence on French painting for the remainder of the 16th century.

In 1543 Primaticcio completed a number of decorations for the bedchamber of the Duchesse d'Etampes; all of these works survive. During this period he also completed work on the Galerie d'Ulysse (1541–70) and the Salle de Bal (or Galerie Henri II). The former was completely destroyed under Louis XV, and the latter has been heavily restored. Primaticcio increased his use of foreshortening and illusionistic treatment of subjects in his later work. His design for the ceiling of the chapel of the Hotel de Guise in Paris (1557) was to be the artist's last major work. For the last decade of his life, Primaticcio collaborated with the sculptor Germain Pilon on the tomb of Henry II in the abbey church of St. Denis near Paris. In his decorations Primaticcio was one of the first artists in France to replace religious themes with those of classical mythology. He subdued the violence of Italian Mannerism, investing it with a quiet and characteristic French elegance.

 


The Holy Family with Sts Elisabeth and John the Baptist
1541-43
Oil on slate, 43,5 x 31 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg



 


The Rape of Helene
1530-39
Oil on canvas, 155 x 188 cm



 

 

Danae




 

 


Venus and Cupid




 

 

Odysseus und Penelope




 

 

Der trunkene Bacchus




 

 

Juno wakes up the dreams




 

 

Venus and Cupid




 

 

Internal of the Persepoli's Palace

 

 

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