CARRACCI, Italian family of artists

The family, originally from Cremona, had settled around the middle of the 15th century in Bologna, where its male members earned their living as tradesmen. A genealogical tree (excluding the female family members) was drawn up around 1600 by Agostino Carracci. Three members of the family, Ludovico Carracci and his cousins Agostino Carracci and Annibale Carracci, rose to artistic prominence in the last quarter of the 16th century. Jointly they effected an artistic reform that overthrew Mannerist aesthetics and initiated the Baroque. Among their many pupils were three younger members of the Carracci family. Of these, only Agostino's natural son Antonio Carracci achieved significant originality vis-a-vis his more famous father and uncles. The other two, Ludovico's younger brother Paolo Carracci (15681625) and Francesco or Franceschino Carracci (15951622), the son of Agostino's and Annibale's brother Giovanni Antonio Carracci, were mediocre talents who produced no works of importance to the history of art.

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