RUSTICI, Francesco
(b. ca. 1575, Siena, d. 1626, Siena)


Italian painter, called 'il Rustichino', part of a family of artists. Members of the family were active in Siena from the 15th to the 17th century. Information on their lives is sparse.

The founder of the family, Lorenzo Brazzi, was from Piacenza. Cristoforo di Lorenzo Brazzi (d. 1545), an architect, worked mainly in Siena according to 16th-century documents. The painter Lorenzo Rustici (1521-after 1573) was his son, and the family name probably derives from Lorenzo's nickname, 'il Rustico'. A pupil of Sodoma, Lorenzo was known principally as a stuccoist and painter of grotesques. He worked in Siena for Venanzio Paccinelli (1551) and executed frescoes (1555) in the oratory of the Compagnia di San Michele. In 1563 Lorenzo received the commission to decorate two arcades of the Loggia della Mercanzia. This work, much repainted, is composed of elaborate stuccowork and paintings and betrays a typically Mannerist style, which recalls Baldassare Peruzzi, Perino del Vaga and the work of Vasari in the Palazzo Vecchio, Florence. The decoration of the chapel of Scipione Chigi's Villa (now Chigi-Saracini) near Siena dates from 1563 and the PietÓ for the Monte dei Paschi, Siena, dates from 1571-72.

Lorenzo's son Vincenzo Rustici (1556-1632) was a pupil of Antonio Casolani. Documents record that he painted an altarpiece with a Madonna and Saints, commissioned in 1594 by the Compagnia di San Domenico in Siena, and that in 1613 he received a payment for some signs he had painted for the house of a magistrate. The painters Cristoforo Rustici, 'il Rusticone' (1560-1640), and Francesco Rustici, 'il Rustichino', were respectively Vincenzo's brother and son. There are no records of the Rustici family in Siena after 1824.

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