Bartolomeo Cavarozzi

Dates1587 - 1625

Like many European artists of the early 1600s, Bartolomeo Cavarozzi was greatly influenced by Caravaggio's innovative and forceful paintings. Emulating Caravaggio's commitment to realism and use of dramatic contrasts of light and shade, Cavarozzi developed his own variation of "Caravaggism."

Cavarozzi spent his formative years in Rome. He lived with an aristocratic family, in their home near the Pantheon, and studied at an art academy. During this period, he came into contact with the painter, Cristoforo Roncalli. Cavarozzi's earliest known paintings show Roncalli's influence and suggest that he may have trained with him. But by around 1610, Cavarozzi had come under the influence of Caravaggio, many of whose paintings could be seen in Rome.

In 1617, Cavarozzi traveled to Madrid. The works he executed in Spain display the substantial, naturalistic figures and use of raking light and darkness found in Caravaggio's work. Yet Cavarozzi developed his own distinctive style. He avoided the overtly dramatic presentation of many of Caravaggio's followers, instead favoring more tender, restrained figures. He returned to Rome in 1618 and died in 1625 at the age of about thirty-five.