Portrait of Luigi Parmeggiani
Ignacio de Leon y Escosura
Luigi Parmeggiani, with gray hair and mustache and a serene expression, is portrayed seated in the center of a room, surrounded by the objects that have characterized his antiques business. At the date of the painting, however, Parmeggiani is 41 years old, and is far from resembling the portrait. However, the painting and signature are authentic, and this generates a contradiction. The mystery is probably revealed by the payment request of a Reggio painter, who in the 1930s perhaps received the task of inserting an elderly Parmeggiani in the place of a pre-existing figure. By carefully observing the painting, in fact, around the seated man there are signs of scraping of the pictorial material and evident new layers of color.