CARRACCI, Agostino
(b. 1557, Bologna, d. 1602, Bologna)

Hairy Harry, Mad Peter and Tiny Amon

Oil on canvas, 101 x 133 cm
Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples

These are all portrait likenesses, although this is not in the strictest sense a portrait. The sitters were all members of the Farnese household and were part of the entertainment of the court. Arrigo Gonzales (Hairy Harry) and his sister Tognina were 'wild' natives from the Canary Islands, and had been a gift to Cardinal Odoardo Farnese from his brother the Duke of Parma. Both were hairy all over. The naturalism of Agostiono's depiction is partly a product of scientific curiosity, as is the juxtaposition of the macaw, the monkeys and dogs with Tiny Amon the dwarf and mad Peter the buffoon.