Lodovico

Carracci

Artistic period 1551 to 1600

Nationality

Italian

Birth

1555 (Bologna)

Death

1619 (Bologna)

Biography

Lodovico Carracci (* 21. April 1555 in Bologna; † 13. November 1619 ibid.) was an Italian painter.

Carracci devoted himself first in his hometown under Prospero Fontana, then in Venice, Florence, Parma, Mantua and again in Venice to thorough studies after Titian, Tintoretto, Andrea del Sarto, Correggio and others.

Back in Bologna, together with his cousins Agostino Carracci and Annibale Carracci, he founded the Accademia degli Incamminati ("the one on the right track"), previously known as the Accademia dei Desiderosi ("Academy of those who want to achieve progress"), and despite the fierce rivalry of the old painters, they managed to lure the young and aspiring artists of Bologna into their studios and train them through thorough instruction. The Carraccis referred to the great old masters, Correggio in particular, trying to unite their virtues without being entirely successful.

Despite this eclecticism, however, Lodovico was an important painter; a careful study, strong colour and often a surprising subtlety of emotional expression characterise him. Admittedly, he worked with coarser effects than the great old ones, and the pathetic direction of the 17th century is largely due to him. Most of his paintings, in oil and fresco, can still be found in Bologna (including the seven large frescoes in the convent of San Michele in Bosco, frescoes in the Cathedral of Piacenza).

His last painting was The Annunciation of the Virgin Mary in Bologna Cathedral; the grief of an error discovered too late is said to have caused his death.