The howling figure on the left has been variously interpreted as Jealousy, Despair and the effects of syphilis; the boy scattering roses and stepping on a thorn as Jest, Folly and Pleasure; the hybrid creature with the face of a girl, as Pleasure and Fraud; and the figure in the top left corner as Fraud and Oblivion. The erotic yet erudite subject matter of the painting was well suited to the tastes of King Francis I of France. It was probably sent to him as a gift from Cosimo I de' Medici, ruler of Florence, by whom Bronzino was employed as court painter. Bronzino was also an accomplished poet. The picture reflects his interest in conventional Petrarchan love lyrics as well as more bawdy poetic genres. National Gallery, London
He lived all his life in Florence, and from his late 30s was kept busy as the court painter of Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany. He was mainly a portraitist but also painted many religious subjects, and a few allegorical subjects, which include what is probably his best known work, Venus, Cupid, Folly and Time, c. 1544–45, now in London (Above). Many portraits of the Medicis exist in several versions with varying degrees of participation by Bronzino himself, as Cosimo was a pioneer of the copied portrait sent as a diplomatic gift.
He trained with Pontormo, the leading Florentine painter of the first generation of Mannerism, and his style was greatly influenced by him, but his elegant and somewhat elongated figures always appear calm and somewhat reserved, lacking the agitation and emotion of those by his teacher. They have often been found cold and artificial, and his reputation suffered from the general critical disfavour attached to Mannerism in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Recent decades have been more appreciative of his art. More on Agnolo di Cosimo
38 X 51.5 INCHES
D’Aussy-Pintaud began painting under the influence of her grandfather, an avid - albeit amateur - painter. She becam a student of sculptor M. A. Seysse, also in Bordeaux. Later, she would study under painter and mentor Biloul while attending the Gustave Moreau School in Paris.
Her earlier work is her best known, for her ability to observe the naked form in a refined and what has been described as an even chaste manner. D’Aussy-Pintaud’s painting of figures is classic and purist, while the very expressive backgrounds and landscapes are handled with expressionistic vigor.
Her work was exhibited in the Salon des Artistes Français between 1934 and 1942. In 1944, D’Aussy-Pintaud would ultimatlely settle with her husband in the city of Ciboure (Lapurdi) until the time of her death in 1990. More on Louise d’Aussy-Pintaud
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