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Amico Aspertini - Italian Artist From Art History

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Historical Artist - Amico Aspertini (1470 - 1552)

Born into a long line of painters, Amico Aspertini’s talent developed at an early age. He studied under many masters, notably Francesco Francia whose skill was derived from Raphael and had recognizable effect on Aspertini’s paintings. His interest in antiquities was noticeable in his works, which often incorporated ancient art and architecture. This was most likely a result of Aspertini’s three-year stay in Rome beginning in 1500 where he filled sketchbooks of drawings of classical ruins. Upon his return to Bologna in 1504, he began painting frescoes for the oratory of Santa Cecila in San Giacmomo Maggiore. Aspertini also worked on sculptures from 1510 to 1530, while also producing commissions for income. Aspertini was also chosen to decorate an arch for Pope Clement VII and Emperor Charles V’s arrival in Bologna in 1529.

Giorgio Vasari describes Aspertini as having an eccentric personality, who, half-insane, worked so rapidly with both hands that chiaroscuro was split, chiaro in one hand, scuro in the other. He quotes Aspertini as complaining that all other Bolognese colleagues were copying Raphael. Aspertini also painted façade decorations (all lost), and altarpieces, many of which are often eccentric and charged in expression. For example, his Bolognese Pieta appears to occur in an other-worldy electric sky.

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