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Fra Battista Spagnoli

Painter, theologian, Carmelite and poet

Born
1447 in Mantua
Died
1516 in Mantua

One Work by Fra Battista Spagnoli

Biography

The Carmelite monk Fra Battista Spagnoli is a well-known historical figure as an important humanist, cleric, and general of the Carmelite Order (1513-1516). The first indication that he also worked as a painter comes from I. Donesmondi's Mantuan church history written at the beginning of the seventeenth century. Owing to the absence of documented works, however, Spagnoli the painter has remained a wholly obscure figure. This changed only recently, when A. de Marchi interpreted the inscription on the back of the Frankfurt painting of the Lamentation of Christ as an indication of Spagnoli's authorship and was able, on the basis of style, to attribute to him a series of other works that had previously been credited to either Antonio della Corna, who worked in Cremona in the last quarter of the fifteenth century, or the anonymous 'Maestro di Palazzo d'Arco'.