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Antoniazzo Romano


ca. 1435 in Rome
1508 / 1512 in Rome

One Work by Antoniazzo Romano

One Work based on Antoniazzo Romano


Antoniazzo Romano's birth year is unknown, as is the precise date of his death. He must have died in 1512 at the latest, for at that time his estate was divided, though his will dates from 23 February 1508. Antoniazzo was born into a Roman family of artists. His father, his brother and his son Marcantonio were all painters. He was likely trained in his father's workshop, while his son also succeeded him as an artist. Romano is first mentioned in 1452 in connection with a criminal matter, and beginning in 1464 he is documented as a 'magistro'. The first painting assured to be his by an inscription dates from that same year, a Madonna and Child in the Museo Civico in Rieti. Signed and dated works by Antoniazzo are preserved from 1467, 1483, 1486, 1489, 1494 and 1500. His art was shaped by local tradition, which around the middle of the fifteenth century was primarily influenced by Benozzo Gozzoli. But from the beginning, his distinctly sculptural figural style shows the additional influence of Piero della Francesca and Melozzo da Forlì. Antoniazzo was the most important native artist in Rome in the second half of the fifteenth century; with his large workshop he produced a variety of works for the Curia as well as for clients in Latium and Campania. In the 1480s and 1490s, his patrons were primarily foreign prelates, including a number of Spaniards, who appear to have especially valued him. in collaboration with such non-local artists as Melozzo (1480) and Perugino (1484/85), Antoniazzo probably placed his own workshop at their disposal. These contacts with at least partially 'more modern' painters influenced his own further development somewhat, though without fundamentally changing his art, which to a considerable degree is expressed in ceremoniously rendered single figures in static isolation. In 1478 the artist helped to write the statutes of Rome's Brotherhood of St Luke. Around 1491 he was called in as an expert in the appraisal of the frescoes by Filippino Lippi in the Carafa Chapel in S. Maria sopra Minerva, and he is repeatedly documented as a member and secretary of various Roman brotherhoods. He also worked for these as a painter, not only producing new paintings but also copying older ones. This was not without its effect on his own style, the design of his pictures, many of which followed older archetypes. Since he apparently used cartoons in making them, there was no limit to their reuse in his workshop, which explains the large number of works attributed to him or to his workshop. In addition to his work as a panel painter, Antoniazzo also painted frescoes for larger commissions employing his workshop and at times collaborating outside artists.