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Michelangelo Buonarroti | High Renaissance | Sculpture

Michelangelo, in full Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (born March 6, 1475, Caprese, Republic of Florence [Italy]-died February 18, 1564, Rome, Papal States) Italian Renaissance sculptor, painter, architect and poet who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art.
Michelangelo was considered the greatest living artist in his lifetime, and ever since then he has been held to be one of the greatest artists of all time. A number of his works in painting, sculpture, and architecture rank among the most famous in existence.
Although the frescoes on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel🎨 (Vatican; see below) are probably the best known of his works today, the artist thought of himself primarily as a sculptor. His practice of several arts, however, was not unusual in his time, when all of them were thought of as based on design, or drawing. Michelangelo worked in marble sculpture all his life and in the other arts only during certain periods. The high regard for the Sistine Ceiling🎨 is partly a reflection of the greater attention paid to painting in the 20th century and partly, too, because many of the artist’s works in other media remain unfinished.

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Michelangelo | San Giovannino di Ubeda, 1495-1496 | Museo del Prado

The biographies of Michelangelo by Vasari🎨 (1550) and Condivi (1553) recount that following the artist’s return to Florence from Bologna in 1495, his first commission was for a marble sculpture of a “San Giovannino” for Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de’Medici (cousin of Lorenzo the Magnificent), now identified as the present work. Rather than following the model of Donatello🎨’s Saint John the Baptist (Florence, Museo del Bargello) as other Florentine sculptors had done, Michelangelo depicted the Baptist as much younger, no more than a boy of six or seven.

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Michelangelo | Pietà for Vittoria Colonna, 1538-44

The Pietà for Vittoria Colonna is a black chalk drawing on cardboard (28.9 × 18.9 cm) by Michelangelo Buonarroti🎨, dated to about 1538-44 and kept at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.

Michelangelo became acquainted with Vittoria Colonna (1492-1547, marchioness of Pescara, was an Italian noblewoman and poet) around 1538. Their lively friendship gained Michelangelo admission to her social circles, and he became acquainted with issues of church reform.
For Colonna, Michelangelo executed several paintings in the fifth decade of the sixteenth century.
All of them are now lost or of controversial attribution, but several sketches and copies by students and admirers of Michelangelo have been preserved.
Apart from a famous Crucifixion🎨, Michelangelo's most notable work for Vittoria Colonna is a Pietà, of which a remarkable drawing is exhibited at Boston.

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Kal Gajoum, 1968 | Cityscape painter

Kal Gajoum🎨 is an artist from Tripoli, Libya who currently resides in British Columbia, Quebec, Canada.
Kal Gajoum lived for extended periods of time in Malta, England and Paris before moving to Vancouver, British Columbia.
During these periods he earnestly studied fine art at the knee of some of the greatest teachers in Europe where he fell in love with the post-impressionist style.

For more biographical notes -in english and italian- and other works by Gajoum see:

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Giacomo Ceruti | Baroque / Genre / Portrait painter

Giacomo Antonio Melchiorre Ceruti (October 13, 1698 - August 28, 1767) was an Italian🎨 late Baroque painter🎨, active in Northern Italy in Milan, Brescia, and Venice. He acquired the nickname Pitocchetto (the little beggar) for his many paintings of peasants dressed in rags.
He was born in Milan, but worked primarily in Brescia. He may have been influenced early by Antonio Cifrondi and/or Giacomo Todesco (Todeschini), and received training from Carlo Ceresa. While he also painted still-life paintings and religious scenes, Ceruti is best known for his genre paintings, especially of beggars and the poor, whom he painted realistically and endowed with unusual dignity and individuality.
Ceruti gave particular attention to this subject matter during the period 1725-1740, and about 50 of his genre paintings from these years survive.

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Tomasz Alen Kopera, 1976 | Magic Surrealism painter

Polish painter🎨 Tomasz Alen Kopera was born in Kożuchów, Poland. He attended the University of Technology in Wrocław, where he gained a degree in construction engineering.
His artistic talent came to light already in early childhood. Tomasz paints in oil on canvas. Human nature and the mysteries of the Universe are his inspiration.
His paintings permeate with symbols that often relate to human psyche and man’s relation with the surrounding world. His paintings are dark and mysterious.
The technique, developed over many years, testifies to the artist’s great sensitivity and talent. Tomasz is celebrated for his acute attention to detail and mastery of colour.
“In my work I try to reach to the subconscious. I want to keep the viewer’s attention for a longer moment. Make him want to reflect, contemplate”.
In 2005, the artist moved to Northern Ireland where he lives now.
From 2010 he has been a member of Libellule Group formed by Lukas Kandl.

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Tintoretto 1519-2019 | 500th anniversary of the birth of the Venetian painter

In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the birth of Jacopo Tintoretto (1519-1594)🎨, the National Gallery of Art, Washington and the Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia with the special cooperation of the Gallerie dell’Accademia, will organize a major exhibition on the Venetian master.
  • Following its opening at the Palazzo Ducale, Venice, beginning in September 2018, Tintoretto: Artist of Renaissance Venice will travel to the Gallery - its only other venue - from March 10 through July 7, 2019.
As the first retrospective of the artist in North America, the exhibition will include many significant international loans traveling to the U.S. for the first time.
The exhibition will feature nearly 50 paintings and more than a dozen works on paper spanning the artist’s entire career and ranging from regal portraits of Venetian aristocracy to religious and mythological narrative scenes.
The exhibition curators are Tintoretto experts Robert Echols, independent scholar, and Frederick Ilchman, chair of the Art of Europe department and Mrs. Russell W. Baker Curator of Paintings at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

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Giovanni Antonio Boltraffio (1466-1516) | High Renaissance painter

Born in Milan, Boltraffio (1467-1516), sometimes called Giovanni Antonio Beltraffio, was a painter of the High Renaissance🎨 said to work with Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)🎨.
This is partially confirmed by the biographer, Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574)🎨 and also from Leonardo’s note of a Gian Antonio working in his studio. There is also the evidence that Boltraffio painted closely to the style of da Vinci at the time.
His pieces showing the influence of da Vinci include his Madonna and Child, among his other depictions of the Virgin and child, as well as in his portrait work. They clearly show the use of a common da Vinci trait, the smoky blend of color and tone to create depth in the image, a method called Sfumato.

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Lisa Yuskavage, 1962 | Figurative painter

Lisa Yuskavage is an American artist🎨 who lives and works in New York City. She is known for her figure paintings, in which seemingly ignoble subjects are depicted with classic, historical techniques.
Yuskavage was born in 1962 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She attended the Tyler School of Art at Temple University, and studied abroad during her third year through the Tyler School of Art’s program in Rome, before obtaining her BFA in 1984. Yuskavage received her MFA from the Yale School of Art in 1986.
She had a New York exhibit sell out before it opened, and one of her paintings sold at auction for more than $1 million.
In September 2015, Lisa Yuskavage: The Brood opened at the Rose Art Museum of Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts.

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Guercino (1591-1666) Baroque Era painter

Giovanni Francesco Barbieri was called Guercino in reference to his pronounced squint.
He was the leading Bolognese painter after the death of Guido Reni🎨. His earlier pictures typically combine the chiaroscuro effects of Caravaggio🎨 with a charm and softness not usually found in followers of this artist.
Guercino was born at Cento, near Bologna. He was largely self-taught but influenced by the Carracci🎨 and particularly by Ludovico Carracci.
An early commission in Bologna was the altarpiece of the 'Investiture of Saint William' (1620, Bologna, Pinacoteca).
In 1621 Guercino was invited to Rome to work for Pope Gregory XV.
His ceiling fresco, Aurora, was painted for the Pope's nephew (Rome, Villa Ludovisi).

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