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Crespi, Giuseppe Maria (1665-1747)
An Allegory of the ArtsDate: c. 1730
Technique: Oil on canvas
Museum: National Gallery of Canada
Size: 126.5 x 138.5 cm
Crespi was a founding member and one of the first directors of Bologna's Accademia Clementina. His personification of the arts is executed with conviction and audacity. The monumental figure, clothed in layers of swirling blue and white drapery, holds in her extended left hand a painter's palette and brushes, while with her right she has sketched a scene of Pygmalion and Galatea, signifying sculpture. Behind her, a harp and lute refer to the art of music. The brilliance of the painted surface and the evident changes the artist wrought reflect both the energy and inventiveness of this important figure of the early Italian Settecento.
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