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Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....


(b Modena, c. 1490; d London, ?Feb 15, 1569).

Italian stuccoist, sculptor, painter and costume designer, active in France and England. He worked in France as a painter (1515–22), probably under Jean Perréal and Jean Bourdichon, then in Mantua, possibly under Giulio Romano, possibly calling himself ‘da Milano’. By 1532 he was at Fontainebleau and in 1533 was engaged with Francesco Primaticcio on the stuccoes and painting of the Chambre du Roi and was one of the highest paid of his collaborators. He may also have worked on the Galerie François I. He was described in 1534 as sculpteur et faiseur de masques and in 1535 made masquerade costumes for the wedding of the Comte de Saint-Pol. He was later involved in a fraud and by August 1537 was in England, where he settled. By 1540 Bellin was employed at Whitehall Palace, probably on making stucco chimneypieces, including that in the privy chamber. The following year he and his company of six were working on the slate carvings at ...


Gordon Campbell

(fl 1511–1542),

Italian painter, active in England. He is named as ‘Alex of myllen’ and thereafter described as a ‘myllyner’, so it seems likely that he came from Milan; the persistent notion that he was a woman has been discredited by a record of tiles ‘by him delivered’. From 1511 to 1542...


[Nanni, Giovanni; Ricamatori, Giovanni dei]

(b Udine, Oct 27, 1487; d Rome, 1564).

Italian stuccoist, painter, draughtsman and architect. In 1502 he was apprenticed to Giovanni Martini (also called Giovanni da Udine; d 1535), a painter in Udine, and subsequently he may have studied with Giorgione in Venice. According to Vasari, armed with a letter of introduction to Baldassare Castiglione, he decided to go to Rome to seek work with Raphael. He joined Raphael’s workshop, where he may have learnt techniques of still-life painting from a Netherlandish colleague. The musical instruments in Raphael’s St Cecilia altarpiece (1516; Bologna, Pin. N.) are often attributed to Giovanni.

In Rome, Giovanni da Udine was particularly inspired by the decoration of ancient buildings. Excavations revealed rooms then underground (thus called grotte) with a style of painted and plastered decoration incorporating foliated scrolls, naturalistic animals and plants and fantastic figures and architecture (hence called grotteschi; see Grotesque). Such motifs had been copied before in Rome (notably by Bernardino Pinturicchio), but it was ...


Paul Barolsky

[Ricciarelli, Daniele]

(b Volterra, 1509; d Rome, April 4, 1566).

Italian painter, stuccoist and sculptor. Much of the fascination of his career resides in the development of his style from provincial origins to a highly sophisticated manner, combining the most accomplished elements of the art of Michelangelo, Raphael and their Mannerist followers in a distinctive and highly original way. He provided an influential model for numerous later artists in Rome.

The only work to survive from Daniele’s early career is a fresco, a political allegory of Justice, painted shortly after 1530 for the Palazzo dei Priori in Volterra (now detached, Volterra, Pin. Com.). It reflects the pervasive influence of Sodoma, with whom he is presumed to have studied in Siena. Badly damaged and overpainted, it is a generally clumsy work, demonstrating an inadequate grasp of foreshortening; it exhibits the difficultà of manner noted by Vasari.

It is not known exactly when Daniele travelled to Rome, but it is now generally assumed that his initial work there on the ...


Henri Zerner

[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 (e.g. The Nymph of Fontainebleau). 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 (see Fontainebleau, §1). More generally, it designates the art made to decorate the château of Fontainebleau, built from 1528 by Francis I and his successors (see Valois, House of family, §14), and by extension it covers all works that reflect the art of Fontainebleau. The principal artists of the school were ...


Jane L. Carroll

[Cornelisz., Pieter]

(b Leiden, c. 1484; d Leiden, between Oct 31, 1560 and early July 1561).

North Netherlandish painter and designer of maps, furniture and glass paintings. He was the eldest son of Cornelis Engebrechtsz.; in 1509 he married Marytgen Gerytsdr. van Dam. In 1514 and 1519 his name appeared in the Leiden civic guard lists, where he is recorded as a painter and not as a glass painter (contrary to van Mander’s report). On 9 April 1530 Pieter moved to Bruges to be with his younger brother, the painter Cornelis Cornelisz. Kunst (1493–1544), and to take charge of his sibling’s business affairs. Pieter had returned to Leiden by 1532, when he designed a pulpit for the St Pieterskerk, his only important documented work.

His earliest recorded work is a glass window from 1516 for the Marienpoel cloister near Leiden. The work is described as a small pane with a drinking scene (a Prodigal Son?), which was executed for Lambert Johansz. Such a piece may support van Mander’s claim that Pieter Cornelisz. taught the art of glass painting to ...


Torbjörn Fulton

[Anders målare]

(b ?Nyköping, Södermanland, c. 1510; d Kronoberg Castle, Småland, 1585–6).

Swedish painter and architect. He has been regarded as the most important adviser to the Vasa kings up to the 1570s, and a number of funerary monuments and pieces of furniture as well as buildings have been attributed to him, though none with certainty. In the 1540s he carried out decorative work in the royal castle (replaced c. 1697–1750 by the present Royal Palace) in Stockholm and at Gripsholm Castle. In the State Hall at Gripsholm he may have been responsible for a series of monumental paintings depicting scenes from Roman history, probably making symbolic reference to the Swedish king Gustav I (reg 1523–60), for whom the castle was built. The paintings no longer exist, but they are known from small-scale watercolour copies (Stockholm, Kun. Bib.) made between 1722 and c. 1770. These suggest that the original paintings were influenced by the work of Lucas Cranach the elder. Larsson may also have executed a ceiling painting at Gripsholm that is dated ...


Philippe Rouillard

[Regnauldin, Laurent]

(fl 1534; d between 7 Feb and June 28, 1567).

Italian sculptor, stuccoist and painter, active in France. He was a pupil of Giovanni Francesco Rustici, whom he accompanied to France, and he is usually identified as the ‘Laurent Regnauldin’ recorded from 1534 as a Florentine painter at the château of Fontainebleau. His actual role seems to have been that of a sculptor and stucco modeller in the team of artists directed by Francesco Primaticcio that was responsible for the decoration of the Chambre du Roi (1535; destr.), the Chambre de la Reine (1535–6; destr. except for the chimney-piece) and the room above the Porte Dorée (destr.)

According to Vasari, Naldini was in Florence in 1540. Between 1540 and 1550 he was employed regularly by the French Crown as a restorer of antique sculpture and of the coral carvings in the Cabinet du Roi. From 1542 he collaborated with Simon Le Roy (fl from 1534) on carved decoration for the rood screen (destr. ...


[Jacquiau; Jacquieu; Jacquin; Jacquio]

(fl c. 1527–70).

French sculptor, stuccoist and painter. He was incorrectly identified by Vasari as Paolo Ponzio Trebatti, a Tuscan sculptor. In documents he identified himself as a French sculptor: ‘Io Ponsio Francese’. He probably trained in Italy, perhaps in the circle of Francesco Primaticcio, and is named as a member of the Accademia di S Luca in Rome in 1527 and 1535. He probably returned to France in Primaticcio’s retinue, collaborating with him at Fontainebleau, and in 1552 on the grotto at the château of Meudon (destr.), near Paris, for the Duchesse d’Etampes. Returning to Rome around 1553, he was paid between 1553 and 1556 for stuccowork and frescoes in apartments at the Palazzo Sacchetti (formerly Palazzo Ricci). These decorations reflect the style of the Fontainebleau school and include grotesques and landscape frescoes in the apartments of Giacomo Marmitta, secretary to Cardinal Giovanni Ricci, and those in the Camera d’Audienza and Salotto Rosso. Stuccos in the Sala degli Stucchi were probably executed in collaboration with other artists....


Dorigen Caldwell

(b Bologna, 1504–5; d Paris, between 2 March and Sept 14, 1570).

Italian painter, draughtsman, stuccoist and architect, active in France. He was in France from 1532 and was the most influential Italian artist there in the 16th century. With Rosso Fiorentino, he developed a style of interior decoration, combining Mannerist painting and stucco relief, that became known as the Fontainebleau school.

He trained in Bologna, first with Innocenzo da Imola and then Bagnacavallo, in a milieu predominantly influenced by the style of Raphael and his pupils. A formative influence was Giulio Romano, with whom he worked from 1526 on the decoration of the Palazzo del Te in Mantua. The scale of the project and the lack of documentary evidence make it difficult to attribute specific works to Primaticcio, although the stucco of the Triumph of Emperor Sigismond in the Sala degli Stucchi has traditionally been attributed to him, and, according to Vasari, he designed all the stuccowork in that room. Vasari also claimed that Primaticcio executed the first ...


Mara Visonà

[Giovanni di ser Giovanni Guidi]

(b San Giovanni Valdarno, nr Arezzo, 1406; d Florence, Nov 1, 1486).

Italian painter. The son of a notary, grandson of Mone di Andreuccio who practised the art of cassaio (furniture maker) in Castel San Giovanni, and younger brother of Masaccio, he spent some time as a mercenary soldier. From December 1420 and through the following year Giovanni is recorded in Florence in the workshop of Bicci di Lorenzo. In 1426 he is mentioned in the estimo and in 1427 in the catasto (land registry declaration) written jointly with his brother. Surviving documents and works suggest that he was in close collaboration with Masaccio’s workshop. In October 1426 he appears as guarantor of Masaccio in an agreement for the completion of the altarpiece of the Carmine church in Pisa. In 1427 he shared Masaccio’s workshop in the Piazza Sant’ Apollinare (now San Firenze). In 1429 Giovanni paid a three soldi tax based on his own professional activity. In 1430 he enrolled in the Compagnia di S Luca, where he appears as Scheggia (‘Splinter’), a nickname given in Tuscany to individuals of slight stature or who are somehow connected with wood....


Ellen Callmann

[from It. spalla: ‘shoulder’, backrest of a piece of furniture]

Term applied to Tuscan 15th- and early 16th-century painted wall panels. Originally the term denoted panels that were set into the wall panelling at head or shoulder height above the backrest of a piece of furniture. It was later extended to include panel paintings set into the wall and was an integral part of the wainscoting. With few exceptions, spalliere are characterized by their size and shape—larger than cassone panels and proportionally higher, but still two to three times as long as high. A good example is the panel known as the Adimari Wedding (630×1800 mm; Florence, Accad.), now attributed to Scheggia and possibly dating from the 1450s. These pictures were installed above a piece of furniture, such as one or more cassoni, a bed or a lettuccio (a high-backed bench with a chest below the seat that doubled as a narrow bed). Schiaparelli (1908) distinguished between ...