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The Nativity
Oil. Ca. 1656
Cortona, Pietro Da (Pietro Berrettini)
The Nativity
Oil. Ca. 1656
Cortona, Pietro Da (Pietro Berrettini)

The painting was given to Philip IV by Cardinal Francesco Barberini in 1656. It is unusual for being painted on a vitreous paste called aventurine, which acts as the background to the composition. It originally had an ornate silver and lapis lazuli frame, now lost, and was highly esteemed by the King, who displayed it in the Oratory of the Cuarto bajo in the Alcázar in Madrid.

Allegory of the House of Barberini
Black chalk, Pencil, Grey-brown wash, White lead on white paper. 1631
Cortona, Pietro Da (Pietro Berrettini)
Allegory of the House of Barberini
Black chalk, Pencil, Grey-brown wash, White lead on white paper. 1631
Cortona, Pietro Da (Pietro Berrettini)

This drawing depicts the story of the nymphs Florilla and Melissa, twin daughters of Heaven and the Earth, lovers of music (Florilla) and flowers (Melissa), the honeymaker. The young nymphs were respectively turned into flowers and a swarm of bees to punish Apollo, who had fallen in love with Melissa -shown here fainting in the act of metamorphosis- to such a degree that he was neglecting his job

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