Bernardino Poccetti (Barbatelli)

Dates1548 - 1612
RolesArtist
NationalityItalian

At a time when Florentine painting was moving away from Mannerism towards a more naturalistic style, Bernardino Poccetti patiently worked his way up to become an eminent decorative fresco painter. The young Poccetti painted grotesques, then facades, and later expertly designed his frescoes to integrate painting, sculpture, and architecture. Warm, vivid pastel colors characterize his frescoes, while his few paintings on canvas show strong contrasts of light and dark.

Poccetti produced realistic, legible compositions with stylized figures, which were favored by private patrons. Church and corporate patrons, including the monks of Florence and Siena, found his dramatic and easily comprehensible narratives suitable to their aims of promoting piety and the Florentine saints.

Over fifty years after his death, Filippo Baldinucci collected many of Poccetti's drawings--including compositional sketches, individual figure studies, and a fresco cartoon, executed in charcoal or red and black chalk on blue or white paper for a Medici Cardinal. A later artist engraved around forty of these designs.

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