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Belvedere, Andrea

Naples, 1652 - Naples, 1732

Belvedere was the last and most appreciated representative of the Neapolitan still-life tradition, which appeared almost to die out after he passed away in 1732. He began to work in his city of birth in 1674. His style seems to have been shaped by the circle of Paolo Porpora and inspired by the early works of Giuseppe Recco, to judge by the earliest surviving paintings from this period (Naples, Museo di Capodimonte and Sorrento, Museo Correale Terranova). His oeuvre also reveals the ideas of Gian Battista Ruoppolo, to whom it owes much, as well as the influence of the Flemish artist Abraham Brueghel, who established himself in Naples around 1671; both inspired his air of sumptuous opulence which he combined with his natural tendency towards sentimentalism and exquisiteness. The artists who exerted the greatest influence on his creativity were two foreigners established in Rome, Karel von Vogelaer and Franz Werner von Tamm. Famous above all for his flower paintings, he was sent for to the Court of Madrid almost at the same time as Luca Giordano, and resided there from 1694 to 1700, working actively both for the royal family and for the aristocracy. After returning to Naples, he practically abandoned painting and devoted himself to the theatre as a playwright, set decorator and impresario. He often collaborated as a flower specialist with figure painters such as Giordano and Solimena, while executing independently his large paintings of flower vases with exquisitely refined colouring which, in their compositional groups and tonal variety, undeniably herald many of the aesthetic and technical features that spread across the whole of Europe during the Rococo period. Indeed, he paralleled in Italy the work of Jean-Baptiste Monnoyer in France and Great Britain in aspects other than the pomp of the school. His paintings also provided a point of departure for Italian painters such as Tommaso Realfonso, Nicola Casissa and Gasparo López (Luna, J. J.: From Titian to Goya. Great Masters of the Museo del Prado, National Art Museum of China-Shanghai Museum, 2007, p. 384).

Artworks (2)

Flowerpiece
Oil on canvas, 1694 - 1700
Belvedere, Andrea
Flowerpiece
Oil on canvas, 1694 - 1700
Belvedere, Andrea

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