(b. 1675, Venezia, d. 1757, Venezia)

Portrait of a Man

Pastel on paper, 47 x 42 cm
Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan

Among her contemporaries, Rosalba Carriera was regarded as the most famous woman painter of the first half of the 18th century, if not indeed as the "queen of Venice". In Venice, "la famosa Rosalba" ran a salon where society ladies went to see and be seen, and where merchants and aristocrats who were passing through felt duty-bound to have their portraits painted. In 1705 she became the first woman to be elected to the Accademia di San Luca in Rome, in 1720 to the Bolognese Academy and when she went to Paris in 1721/22, where she was also elected to the Academy her pictures unleashed a veritable fashion frenzy.