BARONZIO, Giovanni
(active ca. 1326, d. ca. 1362, Rimini)


Italian painter. There is a confusion in the literature regarding this painter. He is probably identical with the anonymous Trecento painters Master of the Parry Adoration, Master of Santa Colomba, Master of the Life of Saint John the Baptist, and Pseudo-Baronzio. But Giovanni da Rimini seems to be a different contemporary painter active in Rimini.

The name Johannes Barontius appears in the signature of an altarpiece dated 1345. Representing the Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints (Galleria Nazionale, Urbino), it comes from the church of San Francesco at Macerata Feltria. Usually, Barontius (the latinized form of Baronzio) is considered a surname, but a document of 1362 recording the painter's tomb in the church of San Giuliano at Rimini (where he was buried, together with his brother and a son) makes it clear that it was a patronymic. The only other piece of documentary evidence found thus far is a deed dated 1343 that cites “Iohanne Baroncio pictore” as a witness.

Baronzio probably has been a disciple of Giotto but at second hand. He must have begun his career around 1320 under the more immediate influence of Giovanni and Pietro da Rimini. His probable first works include the stories of Christ now divided between the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica di Palazzo Barberini in Rome and the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio in Rimini formerly assigned to the Pseudo-Baronzio. Fragments of an altarpiece depicting the Madonna and Child and stories of the life of the Baptist, including the panels now in the National Gallery of Art, and panels formerly gathered under the name Master of the Parry Adoration belong to a subsequent phase in Baronzio's development. The final phase of his career is represented by the Madonna and Child in Urbino and the other version of the Madonna, generally given to Baronzio, that is still preserved in the church of San Francesco at Mercatello.

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