Saturday, July 30, 2016


Room III - Gallery of the Cardinal
“The room was built as part of the extension work of the building at the time of the Riario family, between 1590 and 1594, under the direction of the architect Giacomo Della Porta. At the time of the Corsini family it was rearranged by the architect Ferdinando Fuga and it became the representative room in the apartment of Cardinal Neri Maria, destined to the “Gallery of paintings” itself and to be the passage that guests had to walk to go to the Audience Hall (Room IV) “(Official Website the Corsini Gallery -
Lovely small bronze group “Small fauns on a goat with parrot” by the Florentine Gaspare Bruschi (1710/80)
Small bronze group “Hercules Child Strangling a Snake” by Alessandro Algardi (1595/1654)
“Christ Crowned with Thorns” and “Adoration of the Shepherds” by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri aka Guercino (1591/1666)
“Jesus and the Samaritan Woman at the Well” by an artist of the school of Guercino
“Adoration of the Magi” by Sebastiano Conca (1680/1764)
“St. Peter healing St. Agatha in prison” about 1613/14 and “Nativity scene” by Giovanni Lanfranco (1582/1647)
“Lanfranco (...) on the 23rd of August 1613 rented for a year, along with Antonio Carracci, a house in Via Paolina. (...) Dating to this period (1612/14), immediately after his return in Rome, is the altarpiece of the Salvation of the Soul for a chapel in S. Lorenzo in Piacenza (now Naples, Capodimonte), the only work in which it's possible to notice a slight temporary approach to the luminous and colorful effects of Bartolomeo Schedoni, but in which are also visible elements of Caravaggio's style. These are even stronger in S. Agatha visited and healed by St. Peter, a 'picture for a room' painted for Pier Maria Dalla Rosa” (Erich Schleier - Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani Treccani)
“In these small paintings nature unfolds with quiet solemnity, surrounded by a satisfied calm where the characters are perfectly at ease and don't recite the usual role of contour, but are naturally taking part of delightful scenes of everyday life. (...) The landscapes by Anesi, mostly of small size, always communicate this wonderful sense of balance, this solar and absolute contemplation” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“Landscape with animals (the ford)” maybe by the German Abraham Begeyn (about 1636/97)
“It is unlikely to identify the author in Nicholaes Berchem, one of the most famous Italianate Dutch painters, despite some compositional elements, such as the peasant girl on the donkey and the theme of travel, are typical of his. Missing in the painting is Berchern's already almost rococo elegance and fluency. (...) The painting, however, is appreciated for a sense of humble truth and participation, for a vision not at all idealized, but real and concrete of a countryside, certainly Roman, desolate and haunted by malaria of which the two peasants show on the faces the terrible signs. Therefore I propose to assign the work to Begeyn a painter who, as well as having imitated Berchem, seems to have been in Italy” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“Carlo Maratta, after the death in 1669 of Pietro da Cortona, became the leading exponent of Roman painting. (...) He left a legacy to the artists of classical training a solid repertoire of formulas and models that would remain valid again for another fifty years” (Maria Antonietta De Angelis)
“St. Jerome” and “St. Joseph” by Guido Reni (1575/1642)
“Battle” by Salvator Rosa (1615/73)
“Adoration of the Magi”, “Adoration of the Shepherds” and “Annunciation” by Giovanni Francesco Romanelli (1610/62) from Viterbo, a pupil of Pietro da Cortona
“Wedding Contract” by Giovanni Mannozzi aka Giovanni da S. Giovanni (1592/1636)
“Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew” by Emilio Savonanzi (1580/1660)
“Holy Family” 1516 by Bartolomeo di Paolo del Fattorino aka Fra' Bartolomeo (1472/1517)
“Venus and Putti” and “Zeus sends Mercury to Apollo” by Francesco Albani (1578/1660)
“A rich mythological conception of learned inventions, never sterile, however, because activated with very sharp transitions of truth, with an ease and a spirit intimately 'Bolognese'. (...) There is in Albani’s works a sense of novelty and poetic sense (...) for his personal humanistic transformation of the concept of classics, impossible to be recreated exactly, but interpreted by Albani with a life of its own, if dropped in a erotic and bourgeois environment” (Antonio Boschetto - Dizionario Enciclopedico degli Italiani Treccani)
“Queen Artemisia Drinking the Ashes of her Husband” and “Lucretia” by the artist from Bologna Gian Gioseffo del Sole (1654/1719)
“Vanity” by Angelo Caroselli (1585/1652)
“St. John the Baptist” by an unknown artist from Naples
“Madonna and Child” and “St. Agnes” by the Florentine Carlo Dolci (1616/86)
“The image was supposed therefore to move emotionally the observer and, in order to achieve this, paintings had to be painted by those who had faith and subjects had to be represented in an illusive way. Dolci expressed in his paintings his personal religiosity but also the religious ideals of the time (...). Dolci assumed this position with precise religious conscience. He gradually honed and extolled his means of expression, relinquishing any dispersion and focusing more and more the image, often reduced to a half figure even without movement. With this painter of great stylistic coherence the expressive evolution happened thus in the sense of increasingly limiting self-imposed constraints to reach with the extreme concentration of an illusively striking image a more compelling call to prayer” (Maria Barbara Guerrieri Borsoi - Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani)
“Battle” by Jacques Courtois aka Borgognone (1628/79)
“Madonna and Child” by Andrea Del Sarto (1486/1530)
“Rest on the Flight into Egypt” sixteenth century by an unknown artist from Parma
“Madonna and Child” by the Orazio Lomi aka Orazio Gentileschi (1563/1639) from Pisa
“In the works of Gentileschi it is possible to see a free and original interpretation of the poetry and coloring of Caravaggio. The Tuscan quality, the simple compositional structures and his clear draughtsmanship and craftsmanship always characterized his production. His profound sense of color led Caravaggio's luminosity to optical effects clearest and lightest such as to enhance in particular the silky brocade and the softness of soft clothes” (Carlo Bertelli, Giuliano Briganti, Antonio Giuliano)
“Madonna of the Straw” about 1625 by the great Flemish Antoon Van Dyck (1599/1641). It was painted during the period in which he lived in Italy
“The painting alludes to Christ's death in the veil of sadness that appears on the face of the Madonna and in the symbols that surround the characters” (Official Website of the Galleria Corsini -
“Portrait of Philip II of Spain” by an artist of the school of Titian
“Virgin Mary” and “St. Joseph” by an artist of the school of Federico Fiori aka Barocci
“Norandino and Lucina discovered by the giant” maybe by the Sicilian Antonio Alberti aka Barbalonga (1600/49) a pupil of Domenichino
The subject was taken from the Orlando Furioso by Ludovico Ariosto
“A rare subject known in Rome for a large painting by Giovanni Lanfranco in the Galleria Borghese which should probably be considered as a precedent for this painting. (...) Are evident, compared with a good graphics capability, the limits of the coloristic research especially in the figures in the foreground made almost monochrome with a few shots of pink to raise the incarnate, probably in an attempt to submit to Domenichino's poetic of 'suffering' with Norandino and Lucina white as marble with fear” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“Birth of the Virgin Mary” by Antonio Carracci (about 1589/1618), son of Annibale Carracci
“Moses saved from the waters” by the Belgian Louis Cousin aka Luigi Gentile (1605/67)
“Ecstasy of St. Mary Magdalene” and “Death of Adonis” by Marco Antonio Franceschini (1648/1729)
“Madonna and Child” by Francesco Trevisani (1656/1746)
“Vision of St. Jerome” and “Charity” by Cesare Gennari (1637/88) from the Emilia region
“Landscape with Animals” by the Dutch Nicholas Berchern (1620/83)          
“Andromeda” by the Florentine Francesco Furini (1603/46) a specialist in painting female pale and smooth bodies
“All the critics have stressed the importance of the stimulus exerted by the pictorial environment of the Venetian lagoon on the development (...) of the style of Furini, without detracting from the influence of other models, starting with Andrea del Sarto and ending with Correggio and Leonardo, whose technique of sfumato impressed Furini very much. He, incidentally, had a copy of the Treatise on Painting by Leonardo, with illustrative drawings done by Furini himself (...). The fourth decade represents the consecration of Furini in Florentine, especially among the noble families” (Roberto Cannatà - Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani Treccani)
“Scene of an inn” by the Flemish David Teniers the Younger (1610/90)
“Country Fair” by Maarten Van Cleve (about 1527/81)
“Farmers and horses” by the Flemish Crispin Van Den Broek (1523/91)
“May Day” by Jacopo Vignali (1592/1664)
“Madonna and Child” by Francesco Solimena (1657/1747)
“Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew” by Mattia Preti (1613/99)
“The vital element of his style is to propose, with clear pictorial view, the fundamental problem chiaroscuro, which, in the footsteps of Caravaggio, by G.B. Caracciolo (the Battistello), on the one hand, and the best Guercino and Lanfranco, from 'another, always represented the reason for his art. Its luminosity is realized (even through complex intentions of composition) more and more decidedly in the paintings collected, where the constraint of space seems to intensify in the imagination of the artist, at the same time, the value chiaroscuro and dramatic feeling” (Enciclopedia Treccani)
“Martyrdom of St. Stephen” by Ludovico Carracci (1555/1619)
“Christ Carrying the Cross” by Benvenuto Tisi aka Garofalo (about 1481/1559)
“Christ Carrying the Cross” by Giorgio Vasari (1511/74)

Monday, July 4, 2016


Room II - First Gallery
“Known in the eighteenth century as 'Second Antechamber', the First Gallery was added, along with the Antechamber, to the apartment of Neri Maria Corsini during the extension work carried out in the years 1750/53 by the architect Ferdinando Fuga” (Official Website the Corsini Gallery -
The decorations of the room 1736/38 are by Ginesio del Barba (1691/1762)
Small bronze statues “Baptism of Jesus” and “Fauns on a goat with parrots” by Alessandro Algardi (1598/1654) and “Lion Biting a Bull” copy by Antonio Susini (1580/1624) from an ancient original statue
Impressive and visually disturbing “Agony of Prometheus Bound to the Rocks”, “Marina with lighthouse” and six other paintings by Salvator Rosa (1615/73)
“A man of brilliant talents but eternal rebel, ruthless in his criticism of society, obsessed with a pre-Romantic egotistical concept of genius, he used to take offense when praised as a painter of landscapes, seascapes and battles. But it is on the successes in this field more than on the large historical compositions that his posthumous fame is resting. The 1700s saw in the landscapes of Salvator Rosa and Claude Lorrain, the quintessence of the contrast between the sublime and the beautiful. In the words of Sir Joshua Reynolds, Claude leads us to the tranquility of the scenes of Arcadia and fairyland, while the style of Rosa has the power to inspire feelings of grandeur and sublimity” (Rudolf Wittkower)
“Landscape with St. John the Baptist” and “Landscape with Horse Riders” XVII century, by an unknown Dutch painter
“Pietà (Mercy)” by Francesco Cozza (1605/82)
“Cozza, a figure painter, favors narrative moments, by subordinating the landscape to the arrangement of characters, expressing consequently a very individual style in the landscape painting of the seventeenth century” (Ludovica Trezzani)
“Hare” by Hans Hoffman (d. 1592)
“Jacob's Ladder” by Donato Creti (1671/1749)
“Together with the senior Marco Antonio Franceschini, Creti was the last significant exponent of the doctrine of classical-idealism in Bolognese painting. He was deeply engaged in what we might call the metaphysics of ideal form, i.e. the search for the perfect shape in nature. For him the important thing was to make the invention of the individual figure and outline its concept perfectly. He was clearly a fanatical perfectionist” (David Miller - Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani Treccani)
“Finding of Moses” by Luigi Garzi (1638/1721) a pupil of Andrea Sacchi later influenced by Carlo Maratta
“Hunters on horses” by the Dutch artist Philips Wouwerman (1619/68)
“Wouwerman's oeuvre consists mainly of small cabinet pieces with horses, such as battle and hunting scenes, army camps, smithies and interiors of stables. He also painted sensitively executed silvery-grey landscapes, genre pieces and a few original representations of religious and mythological scenes. Wouwerman was also exceptionally prolific. Although he only lived to the age of 48, more than a thousand paintings bear his name. Even when one bears in mind that a number of these paintings should actually be attributed to his brothers Pieter and Jan, Philips left an extraordinarily large oeuvre” (from the web site
“Tamar and Judah” by Giovanni Lanfranco (1582/1647)
“Architectonical Perspective” by Viviano Codazzi (1604/70)
“Shepherds and Flock by Some Ruins” by the Dutch Cornelis Van Poelenburgh (about 1586/1667)
“Cornelis van Poelenburgh was a founder of Dutch Italianate landscape painting. He studied under the Utrecht Mannerist Abraham Bloemaert, but his years in Rome, from 1617 to 1625, were more decisive for his development. An early member of the schildersbent, the club for Rome's Netherlandish painters, he was nicknamed “Satyr.” In Rome, a friend noted that Poelenburgh “exerted himself to the utmost to paint his figures in the manner of Raphael.” Poelenburgh also copied German artist Adam Elsheimer's Italianate landscapes, which were usually painted on copper. (…) After returning from Italy, he became one of Utrecht's leading artists, honored as Peter Paul Rubens's guide during his 1627 visit to the city. At the king's invitation, Poelenburgh worked in England from 1638 to 1641. (…) Poelenburgh painted some history paintings, but his fame rests on the enamel-smooth landscapes, often depicting romantic ruins and statuary fragments, that he created after 1620. He was among the first artists to render Italian sunlight and atmosphere convincingly. His highly detailed figures were so admired that he was hired to paint them in other artists' works” (The J. Paul Getty Museum Web Site –
“Holy Family with S. Anna” by Pietro de’ Pietri (1655/1716)
“Holy Family” by Simone Cantarini (1612/48)
“Triumph of Ovid” by Nicolas Poussin (1594/1665)
“History was for Poussin of the highest value, the ideal to which he gave vision. He faced historical, biblical and mythological subjects, from which his spiritual inclinations, which led to the denial of the purposes of the most striking Baroque style, appear abundantly clear” (Carlo Bertelli, Giuliano Briganti, Antonio Giuliano)
“Head of agonizing man” by an unknown artist probably a pupil of Guercino
“Winter Landscape” and “Landscape with Pond” by the Flemish artist Lucas Van Uden (1595/1672-73)
“Portrait of Pope Urban VIII Barberini (1623/44)” about 1636 by Guidobaldo Abbatini (1600/56)
“He can combine with remarkable balance, the 'friendliness' of Matteo, highlighted by a colorist opulence influenced by Pietro da Cortona, but still supported by considerable technical qualities, with the description of a physical decline that shines through, without drama, backlit. There is no doubt on Abbatini's ability, as evidenced by how he can detect the golden embroidery stole, or how casually he describes the lace and the folds of the clothes and he is able to forge with a few touches, the heavy tissue that garnish the seat of the chair. Surely these were the qualities that Bernini appreciated in the Umbrian painter and that led him often to use his cooperation” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“The departure of Jacob” by Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione aka Grechetto (about 1611/65)
“Battle”, “Blindman’s Buff”, “The watering hole” and “St. John the Baptist Preaching” by the so-called bambocciante Michelangelo Cerquozzi (1602/60)
“Portrait of a Man” by Federico Fiori aka Barocci (1535/1612)
“For a long time this painting was considered a self-portrait also by contemporary historiography, until Olsen has expressed doubts about its authenticity. Indeed, both inventory information and comparisons with the identified self-portraits of the painter don't help to clarify the issue. (...) The beautiful head alive and alert is in front of us with no conventionalities, with an immediacy that goes beyond the conventional pose. It is framed by a white collar, soft and smooth, which helps to give life to the face free and gentle of the character. Even in the portrait, Barocci anticipates the demands of the truth of many artists of the seventeenth century” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“Winter Landscape” and “Woodland Landscape” by the Flemish Franz de Momper (1595/1673)
Spectacular “Denial of St. Peter” by the so called Master of the Judgment of Solomon (XVII century) or maybe by Jusepe de Ribera aka Spagnoletto (1591/1652)
“Hunt of Wild Beasts” XVII century, copy from an original by Rubens
“Landscape with peasants” and “Landscape with figures” by the Roman Andrea Locatelli (1693/1741)
“Sposalizio mistico di S. Caterina” di Carlo Maratta (1625/1713)
“St. Peter weeping” by Francesco Solimena (1657/1747)
“The ransom” by the Flemish Christoffel Jacobsz Van Der Lamen (about 1606/about 1652)

Saturday, July 2, 2016



Commissioned by Cardinal Neri Maria Corsini, nephew of Clement XII Corsini (1730/40)
It consists of about 600 paintings, including both those exhibited in eight rooms and those in storage. It is the only eighteenth-century Roman collection that was preserved intact
“Roman Sarcophagi” and “Ancient busts”
Various ancient statues, some of which “completed” arbitrarily in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, including “Cleopatra” completed by Pietro Paolo Olivieri (1551/99) an “Igea” and “Satyr with kroupezion”, also completed by Pietro Paolo Olivieri, dating back to 150 BC found in the Villa of the Quintili
The kroupezion is a kind of wooden sandal used to mark time in dance. This satyr is one of the best existing copies in the world
Room I - Antechamber
“Originally the room was called 'Antechamber of the servants' and it was divided by a corridor that ran along the entire perimeter of the façade of the building, thus allowing the servants to access the rooms that opened onto the Via Lungara through a system of stairs connecting the various floors, without having to go through the reception rooms. At the time of Neri Maria Corsini the room was also known as 'Room of canonizations' for the presence of some paintings (now on display in Room VIII) depicting episodes from the life of people beatified or canonized under Pope Clement XII” (Official Website of the Galleria Corsini -
On the wall above the door “Front of marble sarcophagus” of the third century AD with a bas-relief frieze depicting allegorical scenes of harvesting grapes and circus
Objects placed on furniture:
“Round Cup in yellow alabaster” of the eighteenth century
“Large piece of pink amber” maybe from the Baltic Sea
Small bronze “Time kidnaps Youth” by the Florentine sculptor G.B. Foggini (1652/1725)
Selection of mainly landscape paintings from the collection:
Dughet was born in Rome to French parents and was the brother-in-law of Nicolas Poussin
“Landscape with Rinaldo and Armida hinges on the shady hill in the center from which its bright reliefs convey the air on two telescopes prospective offset to each other, one climbing almost vertically with respect to one's point of view, between mountain ridges, the other scattering in a diagonal through the whole framework, breaking through boundaries to the furthest horizon. The movement of the clouds that are gathering on the mountain and fade bleaching to the marina, are useful to develop an atmospheric space that adds depth and naturalness to the view. (...) The inspiration was given by a view of Mount Soratte that Dughet enriched with specially invented details. (...) It is one of the masterpieces of the great Roman landscape painter” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“Landscape with waterfall and shepherds” and “Landscape with women by a spring” by the Flemish who settled in Rome Jan Frans Van Bloemen aka Orizzonte (1662/1749)
“Even in the great tradition of Dughet and Lorrain, he was able to translate the landscape of Roman countryside according to the canons of the new Arcadian sensitivity. (...) His landscapes are constructed with a classic and serene balance that softens the natural reality in a timeless dimension, led by timid figurines almost afraid to disturb the charm of a nature finally freed from the cares of men” (Sivigliano Alloisi)
“River Landscape” and “Landscape with river and castle” by Giovanni Francesco Grimaldi (1606/80) from Bologna
“Adoration of the Shepherds” by G.B. Passeri (1610/79)
“Landscape” of the so-called Maestro della Betulla (Master of the Birch) (active 1630/40) maybe Gaspard Dughet
“Christ among the Doctors” about 1656/60 by Luca Giordano (1634/1705)
“He reworked the legacy of the past with great critical freedom and his immeasurable creative impetus took advantage of a fast technique: note for example in Jesus among the Doctors the fluid brush that dissolves forms in a golden glow mass. The ability to absorb the different styles or communication techniques made Luca Giordano a modern artist who chose the formal means according to the circumstances and for the purposes of expression. Large dimensions were particularly congenial to his lively sense of color and his inventive streak” (Carlo Bertelli, Giuliano Briganti, Antonio Giuliano)
“Judith and Holofernes” about 1715/20 by G.B. Piazzetta (1683/1754)
“Piazzetta chose to represent the moment immediately prior to the beheading of the Assyrian general. Judith is preparing to loosen with her left hand the strap to which the sword of Holofernes is suspended, while he lies dormant in the lower left of the painting, and at the same time she indicates high above as to implore the help of God and to point to the real inspirer of the act” (Official Website of the Galleria Corsini -
“Small Triptych with Judgement and Pentecost” by Fra' Giovanni da Fiesole aka Fra Angelico (about 1395/1455)
“He wouldn’t paint if he hadn’t prayed first and he never corrected his works, because he was convinced that every stroke of his brush would have a divine inspiration. For all his life he painted sacred subjects (…), but he nevertheless introduced a touch of realism in those solemn compositions, the figures appearing solid and real, reminding us of Masaccio’s style. We must consider that Fra Angelico lived in between two different periods: the Fourteenth century – a century during which the medieval tradition was still felt, emphasizing precious colorful fabric and using golden backgrounds – and the Fifteenth century, during which the Renaissance culture prevails with realism in painting and the rules of perspective. Fra Angelico was influenced by both cultures and styles” (Bettina Mirabile - Enciclopedia dei ragazzi Treccani)
“Battle” by Jacques Courtois aka Borgognone (1628/79)
“Madonna and Child with St. John the Baptist” by Girolamo Siciolante da Sermoneta (1521/80) a pupil of Perin del Vaga
“Madonna and Child” by anonymous painter, copy from an original by Perin del Vaga
“Meeting of Jacob and Laban” by Ciro Ferri (1634/89) from the original by Pietro da Cortona
“Winter” by Eberhard Keilhau detto Monsù Bernardo (1624/87)