Portrait of a Man with a Rosary

  • Giovanna Battista Piazzetta
  • Venice 1682–1754
  • Oil on canvas
  • 17 3/4 x 14 1/2 in.

Portrait of a Man with a Rosary, Giovanna Battista Piazzetta

A character study previously only known from an eighteenth century suite of twenty-three prints by Marco Pitteri (Venice 1702-1786) of saints and faithful that reproduced a series of as yet partially unlocated paintings by Piazettas. For this early copy cf. Rodolfo Palluccini and Adriano Mariuz, L’opera completa del Piazzetta, Milan, 1982, p.113, no. 188, “D’uomo con rosario”. The painting may be dated to the later 1710s in comparison with Piazzetta’s Self-Portrait (private collection; Palluccini, p.76, no. 6 and pl. I) that in comparable scale shows close similarities of palette, chiaroscuro and assertively brushed thick impasto.

The original paint surface has remained fully intact as relined early in the last century without excessive heat or pressure and only superficially cleaned, leaving ample traces of yet unsolved resin varnish in the deeper tracks of the brush.