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Defendente Ferrari

Defendente Ferrari

Italian painter
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Italian painter
A.K.A. Defendente Deferrari, Defendente De Ferrari, Defendente de Ferrari, Defendente da Ferrari, Ferrari
Occupations Painter
Gender male
Birth 1490 (Chivasso)
Death 12 November 1540 (Turin)
Notable Works Virgin and Child with Saint Anne (Anna Selbdritt), Virgin and Child
The details

Defendente Ferrari (c. 1480/1485 – c. 1540) was an Italian painter active in Piedmont. His work marks the transition from late Gothic traditions to Renaissance art in the region.

Life and work

Ferrari was born at Chivasso, near Turin. Here he trained and initially worked in the workshop of Giovanni Martino Spanzotti. Spanzotti had been the pre-eminent painter in western Piedmont after moving to Chivasso c. 1502. Many works previously thought to have been by Spanzotti are now attributed to Defendente.

Defendente achieved considerable success as a painter of polyptychs and altarpieces. He painted a number of nocturnal scenes such as the Nativity in Nocturnal Light (1510, Museo Civico d'Arte Antica di Torino).

He left a number of signed and dated works. His work developed away from its initial harsh style following Gothic traditions towards the use of more fluid brushstrokes and the creation of soft, dense highlights more in line with Renaissance painting. His style seems to indicate that he may have known the work of northern European artists such as Rogier van der Weyden, while his later work shows the influence of Macrino d'Alba.

Selected works

Virgin with Child
  • Triptych (1507) - in the Sacra di San Michele, Piedmont
  • Nativity (1511) - Church of St. John, Avigliana, Italy
  • Polyptych of Sant'Ivo - Galleria Sabauda, Turin
  • Bianzè Polypthych - Museo Borgogna, Vercelli, Italy
  • St. Jerome in Penitence - Turin City Museum of Ancient Art
  • The Mourning of Christ - Cathedral of Chivasso, Italy
  • Madonna and Child - Galleria Palatina, Pitti Palace, Florence
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