TORELLI, Stefano
(b. 1712, Bologna, d. 1784, St. Petersburg)


Italian painter, part of a family of artists. He studied in his native Bologna first under his father, Felice Torelli, and then under Francesco Solimena. He moved to Venice, where he painted in both fresco and oil. The future King of Poland, Augustus III, brought him to Dresden in 1740, where he painted altar-pieces and ceiling decorations, many destroyed in the Seven Years' War. He painted figures in Canaletto's twenty-nine views of Dresden (1741). In the 1750s he was in Dresden where he met Luigi Crespi in 1753.

He worked in Lübeck (1759-61), then in 1762 was summoned to the Russian court where he painted ceilings in the Royal Palace, and some portraits, among the latter one of the Empress Elizabeth in armour. He was appointed Professor of the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg, where he died in 1784.

His son Antonio Torelli (d 1754) was also a painter.