CIMAROLI, Giovanni Battista
(b. 1687, Salò, d. 1771, Venezia)
Italian painter. He was one of the most admired North Italian landscape painters of his day. According to his contemporary, Pietro Guarienti, Cimaroli, who settled in Venice in 1713, had studied in Brescia under Antonio Aureggio and Antonio Calza (1653-1725), and enjoyed the patronage of collectors in England and elsewhere. That Cimaroli was an artist much in demand is illustrated by his collaboration in 1726 with Canaletto, Piazzetta, Pittoni and other artists on series of Allegorical tombs of British worthies commissioned by the 2nd Duke of Richmond. He provided the landscape elements of this commission.
Joining Canaletto's workshop, Cimaroli specialised in landscape and vedute, the two most popular genres in early 18th century Venice. Considered one of Canaletto's major rivals, he found favour among contemporary art critics and enjoyed several commissions from the local nobility, as well as from illustrious foreign residents and Grand Tourists. Many of his works were commissioned and sent to London and elsewhere in Britain.
Cimaroli's idealised pastoral landscapes, reminiscent of Zuccarelli, helped to establish the artist as distinct from the topographical views of Canaletto and the more atmospheric pictures of Ricci. They are characterised by fluent brushwork, in a light palette.
Cimaroli's oeuvre exhibits an obvious indebtedness to the forerunner of the 18th century Venetian vedutismo, Luca Carlevaris: although the younger artist shared the older's interest in the depiction of the daily life of the Serene Republic, the former developed his own personal style, characterised by his dry and sharp brushwork and his particular rendering of light, which made him especially popular with foreign patrons.