CIOLI, Valerio
(b. ca. 1529, Settignano, d. 1599, Firenze)

Fountain of Bacchus

1561-68
Marble
Boboli Gardens, Florence

This grotesque-style fountain represents Braccio di Bartolo, the dwarf at the court of Cosimo I de' Medici. Because of his nudity and potbellied shape, the figure is sometimes identified as Bacchus. However, it is certainly a portrait of Braccio di Bartolo, known as Il Morgante, the most famous of the five buffoons who lived at the Medici court.

The statue, a Medici commission, was only later adapted as a fountain.