LOMBARDO, Tullio
(b. ca. 1460, d. 1532, Venezia)

Self-portrait (?) with his Wife in Ancient Guise

1490-1510
Marble, 47 x 50 cm
Galleria Franchetti, Ca' d'Oro, Venice

Tullio Lombardo is credited with two bust-length reliefs of male and female figures inspired by sculpted Roman and painted Northern and Italian double portraits (such as works by Lotto and Jacopo Bellini). They are depicted semi-nude all'antica, which removes them to an idealized, mythological realm.

On this relief, stylistically and typologically, the man is close to one of the warriors of the Vendramin monument, which has been proposed as a self-portrait. Like freestanding portrait busts, the relief was probably commemorative, perhaps with a matrimonial twist.

The other relief is in Vienna. Both reliefs have the enigmatic quality found in Giorgione's roughly contemporary paintings.




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