Friday, May 13, 2016

Agnolo Bronzino

Florence 1503 - 1572
Portraits of Various, mostly Young, Men

 Bronzino was the most prized student of Jacopo Pontormo and very likely his lover as well.  He was born Agnolo di Cosimo and probably came to be known as Bronzino because of his dark skin.  He collaborated with Pontormo until the master’s death and in these works their styles were sufficiently similar as to appear virtually indistinguishable.  In their respective portraiture, however, there are marked differences.  Pontormo’s models tend to appear emotionally agitated where Bronzino’s subjects are models of calm.  There is a lovely adolescent portrait of the younger artist by the elder in his large panel painting Joseph in Egypt, and he appears very much the most tranquil figure in this many figured work.  Bronzino was the Court Painter for Cosimo I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, from around 1540 until the end of his life. 


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