BELLA, Stefano della
(b. 1610, Firenze, d. 1664, Firenze)

Nocturnal Carousel in the Amphitheatre of the Boboli Gardens

Oil on touchstone, 44 x 59 cm
Alberto Bruschi Collection, Grassina

The nocturnal carousel was held on July 15, 1637, to celebrate the marriage of Fernando II de' Medici and Vittoria della Rovere, and was loosely based on the theme of Gerusalemme Liberate by Torquato Tasso. The scene was set in the amphitheatre of the Boboli Gardens behind the Pitti Palace. The reproduction of the scene by Stefano della Bella presents a dreamlike fantasy image that uses the black background of the stonework to suggest the darkness of the night.