TIEPOLO, Giovanni Domenico
(b. 1727, Venezia, d. 1804, Venezia)

Pulcinella and the Tumblers

1793-97
Detached fresco, 196 x 160 cm
Museo del Settecento Veneziano, Ca' Rezzonico, Venice

This fresco was in the Pulcinella Room of the family villa at Zianigo.

Giandomenico Tiepolo emerged as an intellectual and artistic giant in a tormented, dramatic era of European history with the great closing masterpiece of all eighteenth-century art, the mythological, historical scenes and those of Pulcinella, formerly at the Tiepolo family house (villa) at Zianigo and now in Ca' Rezzonico. The mythological and historical subjects are painted on monochrome grisaille panels, while the scenes from contemporary life and of Pulcinella are created with a bright, richly coloured palette. The artist worked for years on this decoration in the little villa that his father had bought using his substantial income as a well-paid artist. He executed the decoration for his own personal pleasure.

In this scene Tiepolo made Pulcinella both spectator and protagonist of the "topsy-turvy" world that existed on the commedia dell'arte and folk culture.




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