(b. 1494, Firenze, d. 1540, Paris)

Gallery of Francis I

Galerie François I, Fontainebleau

In 1528 Francis I, King of France, decided to replace the Gothic hunting lodge at Fontainebleau, southeast of Paris, with a fitting palace. The heart of the new palace is the Gallery of Francis I, a grand ceremonial space with elegant decoration designed by Rosso Fiorentino. Between 1534 and 1539, Rosso, Primaticcio, and a team of artists created a programme that was visually and iconographically unprecedented in northern Europe. Rosso was in charge of the paintings, Primaticcio and his assistants executed the stucco caryatids, putti, garlands and other framing motifs. Francesco Sibeco da Carpi, a carpenter, prepared the intricate inlaid, wooden wainscoting in 1539. The entire room was completed when Charles V visited in December 1539.