Francesco Guardi Italy
10-5-1712 Venice, ITA - 1-1-1793 Venice, ITABack to Artist IndexView Artists Paintings
Francesco Guardi's father Domenico and his brothers Niccolò and Gian Antonio were also painters, later inheriting the family workshop after the father's death in 1716.
In 1735, Francesco Guardi moved to the workshop of Michele Marieschi, where he remained until 1743.
His works in this period included both landscapes and figure compositions. His early vedutas show influence both from Canaletto and Luca Carlevarijs. On February 15, 1757 he married Maria Mattea Pagani, the daughter of painter Matteo Pagani.
In 1763 he worked in Murano, in the church of San Pietro Martire, finishing a Miracle of a Dominican Saint clearly influenced by Alessandro Magnasco in its quasi-expressionistic style.
Francesco Guardi's most important later works include the Doge's Feasts, a series of twelve canvases celebrating the ceremonies held in 1763 for the election of Doge Alvise IV Mocenigo.
In 1782 Guardi was commissioned by the Venetian government six canvases to celebrate the visit of the Russian Archdukes in the city, of which only two remain, and two others for that of Pope Pius VI. On September 12 of that year he was admitted to the Fine Art Academy of Venice.
Francesco Guardi's painterly style is known as pittura di tocco (of touch) for its small dotting and spirited brush-strokes. This looser style of painting had been used by Giovanni Piazzetta and Sebastiano Ricci, and recalls, in some religious themes, the sweetened sfumato of Barocci's Bolognese style. This style, a century later, would make Guardi's works highly prized by the French Impressionists.
Art Movement: Rococo, Venetian School
Influences: Michele Marieschi, Alessandro Magnasco, Canaletto