BUTTERI, Giovanni Maria
(b. ca. 1540, Firenze, d. ca. 1606, Firenze)
Italian painter. After he trained under Agnolo Bronzino (as did his brother, Cresci Butteri; fl 1551-89), in 1564 he entered the newly founded Accademia del Disegno in Florence, in which he was very active. He worked mainly in Florence and for the Medici on commissions for paintings, decorations for buildings and court occasions (many untraced); these included Michelangelo the Poet with Apollo and the Muses for the funeral of the artist (1564) and Poets and Writers for the wedding (1565) of Grand Duke Cosimo I de' Medici's son Francesco (later Francesco I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany) and Joanna of Austria (1547-78). For the studiolo (Florence, Palazzo Vecchio) of Francesco I de' Medici he painted (1570-71) Aeneas Arriving in Italy and the Glassblowers' Workshop. He worked on a number of commissions under the supervision of another Bronzino protégé, Alessandro Allori, including decorations for the Villa Medici at Poggio a Caiano (1579-82), for the first corridor of the Galleria degli Uffizi (1581) in Florence and for the wedding of Grand Duke Ferdinand I de' Medici and Christine of Lorraine (1589), as well as cartoons (1590s) for the Arazzeria Medicea or tapestry works.
Numerous portraits by Butteri are documented: Bianca Cappello (Arezzo, Museo Casa Vasari); the Virgin and Child with Saints (1575), which contains portraits of Eleonora de' Medici, Cosimo I de' Medici and their sons; and Simone Corsi, Luocotenente of the Accademia del Disegno (1596; both Florence). Other works include the decoration (1578-81), with Allori, of the Palazzo Salviati in Florence (now the Banca Toscana), the Christ and the Centurion (Florence, Santa Maria del Carmine), the Coronation of the Virgin (Florence, Santo Spirito), six frescoes (begun 1582) in the large cloister of S Maria Novella, Florence, and paintings at the Badia of Passignano (1581; in situ), the Miracle of St Giovanni Gualberto and the Trial of St Peter Igneus.
Butteri was a Tuscan Mannerist comparable to such other Bronzino followers as Allori. His paintings are characterized by bright diffused light, metallic colours and figures that show stylized forms and features deriving from Bronzino.