Amedeo Preziosi Biography | Oil Paintings

12-2-1816 Malta, MLT - 9-27-1882 Istanbul, TUR

Preziosi, Amedeo

Amedeo Preziosi (the painter) was born to a noble family in Malta, and from an early age, liked drawing, he was taught by Giuseppe Hyzler. His father wanted Amedeo to study law and sent him to the Law School at the Sorbonne, Amedeo was more interested in art and continues his painting studies at the École des Beaux-Arts, while also attending the University. After his return home, Amedeo did not find the Island of Malta suitable as an artist, especially since his father disapproved of his chosen career. While in Paris, Orientalism was all the rage, so he decided to leave Malta and travel to Istanbul in 1840.

In 1844, Amedeo Preziosi was commissioned by Robert Curzon, the private secretary of the British Ambassador to Istanbul, to create an album called Costumes of Constantinople, which is now in the British Museum.

Amedeo Preziosi sold to European tourists and visitors to Istanbul watercolor drawings of the city and the surroundings, since postal cards and photography were still in their infancy, this was the only memento and he had no trouble communicating with tourists wishing to return home with a souvenir of Istanbul since he was proficient in Greek, Turkish, English, French and Italian.

In 1866, as the new Prince of Romania, Carol I visited Istanbul, he met Preziosi and invited him to Romania to make watercolors of the landscapes and people of the country, and in 1869, the then Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII of the United Kingdom, also visited and bought several watercolors from him.

Amedeo Preziosi came to Romania in 1868 and began sketching scenes from Bucharest and other cities, along with some portraits of Prince Carol I. The sketches were later turned into watercolors in his studio in Istanbul. The Prince of Romania would buy these for prices ranging from 300 to 1200 Francs (equal to US$4000 to $15000 today). Amedeo Preziosi was killed by an accidental gun discharge while hunting.

Art Movement: Orientalism Art.
Artists Influencing Amedeo Preziosi: Giuseppe Hyzler.
He Traveled To France, Turkey, Egypt, Romania.
Artist Biography compiled by Albert L. Mansour at The World's Artist, with text adapted from Wikipedia.

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