The Portrait Society | Federico Zuccari

19/9/1997 | 4th quarter 20th centuryCharcoal and acrylic on canvasH x L : 50 x 40 cm

Federico Zuccari was an Italian Mannerist painter and art theorist. He was the younger brother of the painter Taddeo Zuccari. In 1550, Federico moved to Rome to work with his brother, who was already established as a painter. Together they executed several projects, but already at the age of eighteen Federico received his first independent commissions from Pope Pius IV. After numerous commissions in Rome, Zuccari began to travel in the 1560s. His first stay in Venice was in 1564, during which he painted several religious scenes for the Grimani Chapel in San Francesco della Vigna on commission from Cardinal Giovanni Grimani. He then went on a study tour of Lombardy with the architect Andrea Palladio. In 1565 he worked in Florence on commission from Francesco de' Medici. Zuccari returned to Rome and, together with his brother, executed several frescoes in churches and in the Vatican until the latter's death in 1566. In the following years, Zuccari worked mainly in Rome and Orvieto. In 1574, he set off on a journey to the Netherlands, Spain and England. In London, he painted portraits of Queen Mary of Scotland and Queen Elizabeth I, among others. Towards the end of 1574, Zuccari returned to Florence, where he finished the fresco in the dome of the cathedral begun by Giorgio Vasari. Zuccari also built a house with a workshop, and decorated it himself with allegorical frescoes. In the 1580s - after Pope Gregory XIII had banned him from Rome for his satirical works - he accepted commissions in Venice and Loreto, among other places, before moving to Madrid in 1585, where he executed several frescoes for King Philip II. In 1588, Zuccari was allowed to return to Rome. Together with Cardinal Carlo Borromeo, he founded the Accademia di San Luca in 1593. In addition to his numerous paintings and frescoes, Zuccari designed majolica, trophies and festive architecture. From 1605, he published several papers on art theory. His two residences in Florence and Rome, which he designed himself, are today the seat of the Institute of Art History (Florence) and the Biblioteca Hertziana (Rome).

 

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