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Article

Simonetta Prosperi Valenti Rodinò

(b Busto Arsizio, Nov 11, 1777; d Milan, Dec 15, 1815).

Italian painter, collector and writer. He studied painting at the Accademia di Brera in Milan. Between 1785 and 1801 he lived in Rome, where he met such Neo-classical artists as Angelica Kauffman and Marianna Dionigi (1756–1826) as well as writers, scholars and archaeologists, notably Jean-Baptiste Séroux d’Agincourt, Giovanni Gherardo de Rossi (1754–1827) and Ennio Quirino Visconti. While in Rome he studied Antique and Renaissance works, making copies of the statues in the Museo Pio-Clementino and the frescoes by Raphael and Michelangelo in the Vatican, also furthering his studies of the nude in the Accademia di Domenico Conti and making anatomical drawings of corpses in the Ospedale della Consolazione. On his return to Milan in 1801 he became secretary to the Accademia di Brera, a post he held until 1807. During this period he devoted all his efforts to the restructuring of the Brera, providing it with new statutes and a major library and also founding the adjoining art gallery. He prevented numerous works from being smuggled abroad or dispersed and was responsible for their inclusion in the ...

Article

Laure Pellicer

(b Montpellier, April 1, 1766; d Montpellier, March 16, 1837).

French painter, printmaker and collector. He was taught by the painter Jean Coustou (1719–91) in Montpellier before entering, in 1783, the studio of David, to whose artistic principles he remained faithful all his life. His career as a history painter began brilliantly when, in 1787, he won the Prix de Rome for Nebuchadnezzar Ordering the Execution of Zedekiah’s Children (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.). This early success was consolidated by the four years he spent at the Académie de France in Rome and by the enthusiastic reception of his Death of Abel (1790; Montpellier, Mus. Fabre) at the Salon of 1791.

In 1793 his royalist sympathies forced him to move to Florence, where the poet Vittorio Alfieri and his mistress the Countess of Albany, estranged wife of the Young Pretender, introduced him to the artistic and social life of the city. In the years preceding the French invasion of Tuscany in ...

Article

David Rodgers

(b Murdieston, Lothian, 1723; d Rome, Jan 4, 1798).

Scottish painter, archaeologist and dealer, active in Italy. He was educated at Glasgow University and in 1748 arrived in Rome to study portrait painting under Agostino Masucci. He lodged with the architects James Stuart and Nicholas Revett; they probably encouraged him to visit Herculaneum and the recently discovered archaeological site of Pompeii, which had a profound effect on his subsequent career. Convinced that ‘the ancients have surpassed the moderns, both in painting and sculpture’, Hamilton undertook a systematic study of Classical antiquities during the 1750s and 1760s. In 1751 he was briefly in Scotland, where he painted a full-length portrait of Elizabeth Gunning, Duchess of Hamilton (Lennoxlove, Lothian), in a conventional style derived from van Dyck. He returned to Rome in 1752 and remained there, with the exception of short visits to England, for the rest of his life. In 1755 he was introduced by Anton Raphael Mengs to Johann Joachim Winckelmann, who was to become one of the leading theorists of Neo-classicism. In the same year Hamilton entertained Robert Adam (i), who studied in Rome from ...

Article

Ingrid Sattel Bernardini

[Maler Müller]

(b Kreuznach, Jan 13, 1749; d Rome, April 23, 1825).

German painter, engraver, draughtsman, poet and Playwright. From about 1765 he was taught by Daniel Hien (1724–73), court painter to Christian IV, Duke of Zweibrücken, with 17th-century Dutch painting as his model. Müller showed a talent for realistic depiction of animals, especially horses, and landscape, including farm scenes. The Duke gave him an allowance so that, from 1769, he was able to attend the Mannheim Akademie. Müller’s friendship there with Ferdinand Kobell and Franz Kobell (1749–1822) led to a considerable mutual influence in the work of all three. Müller also established himself as a poet at this time, becoming one of the representatives of the late 18th-century German literary movement known as Sturm und Drang. In the course of the 1770s Müller wrote a celebrated series of idylls, the lyric drama Niobe and the first parts of his Fausts Leben dramatisiert, all issued in editions with his own engraved illustrations. Life drawings and etchings from this period are in Mannheim (Städt. Reiss-Mus.), Frankfurt am Main (Goethemus.) and Monaco-Ville (Archvs Pal. Princier). At this time, however, Müller’s work as a poet and dramatist was more widely known and admired than his work as an artist. His study of the famous collection of casts of antique sculptures in the Antikensaal at Mannheim, and of paintings in the picture gallery belonging to the Elector ...

Article

Roberta J. M. Olson

(b Bologna, 15 May ?1775–7; d Turin, March 6, 1860).

Italian painter, architect, designer and collector. At the age of 12 he began to frequent the house in Bologna of his patron Conte Carlo Filippo Aldrovandi Marescotti (1763–1823), whose collections and library provided his early artistic education and engendered his taste for collecting. From 1795 he worked on several decorative schemes with the theatre designer and decorator Antonio Basoli (1774–1848), and it was perhaps in theatre designs that Palagi was first exposed to an eclectic range of motifs from exotic cultures. He was influenced by the linear, mannered style of Felice Giani, with whom he frequented the important evening drawing sessions at the house of the engraver Francesco Rosaspina (1762–1841). Beginning in 1802, he participated in the informal Accademia della Pace, Bologna, as well as studying at the Accademia Clementina, and was elected to the Accademia Nazionale di Belle Arti of Bologna in 1803...