CERESA, Carlo
(b. 1609, San Giovanni Bianco, nr Bergamo, d. 1670, Bergamo)

Portrait of a Friar

1650-53
Oil on canvas, 142 x 127 cm
Accademia Carrara, Bergamo

In a bare interior, a friar wearing a Capuchin habit is seated on a large armchair seen in three-quarter view. His right arm rests on the arm of the chair, while his left grasps a crumpled letter. A small table bears an inkpot, quill pen, and tall crucifix, symbols of the friar's intellectual and devotional life. The painting is linked with Moroni's portraiture not only by the uninhibited and humble pose but also by the dry and almost brutally naturalistic style.