Pupil of Titian in Venice and master of Caravaggio in Milan, Simone Peterzano (about 1535 - 1599) is one of the protagonists of the artistic culture of the second half of the 16th century. What remains in his painting of the teachings of Titian; how many stories between cultural worlds that are now very close but once almost distant, between Venice and Milan; how close could a study of his story bring us to unravel the last great mystery in the history of art: the early years of Caravaggio?
The exhibition of Accademia Carrara Bergamo, curated by Simone Facchinetti, Francesco Frangi, Paolo Plebani and M. Cristina Rodeschini, not only investigates the talent of a painter who is too little known but also, thanks to exceptional national and international loans, l attention to an important chapter of painting between the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, trying to give some answers.
From the works of the master Titian to examples of Venetian painting with Veronese, Tintoretto, Parrasio Micheli, Bernardino Licinio and Paris Bordon, from the works of the pupil Caravaggio to examples of Lombard painting with Antonio Campi, Giovan Ambrogio Figino and Giovanni da Monte. An exhibition itinerary that, also thanks to fascinating testimonies, such as the Venetian edition of 1568 of the Orlando Furioso by Ludovico Ariosto and the Rime by Giovan Paolo Lomazzo of 1587, allows the public to immerse themselves in the culture, tastes and trends of a golden age, on an exciting journey of discovery.
Nine sections are planned : Peterzano's education and youth, in the shadow of Titian; music iconography; erotic subjects; Angelica and Medoro: literary echoes and reflections; Peterzano and the practice of drawing between Veneto and Lombardy; the arrival in Milan: the shovels for the Barnabites; the Milan of Carlo Borromeo; the Lombard affirmation of Peterzano; Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio.
Between Venice and Milan
Peterzano was trained in Venice, although the family is of Bergamo origin. Once in Milan he brings with him the pride of having had Titian as a teacher, the stylistic and cultural references, the sacred themes as well as the profane ones, the suggestions of light and the lively color of Venetian painting. Simone Peterzano arrives in Milan as a novelty compared to his colleagues in the area and in a short time he affirms himself and receives important commissions. His workshop grows, including pupils such as the young Caravaggio, while his language is approaching solutions typical of the Lombard way, in the counter-reformist perspective codified by Carlo Borromeo. This stylistic transition is such that scholars such as Roberto Longhi and Mina Gregori have to wait to resolve overlaps between Peterzano's autograph works and his contemporaries from Lombardy. The Lombard landing accentuates an even more engaging ability to tell the detail and a lively and enameled palette, which on display is represented by two exceptional paintings, the monumental canvases for the Milanese church of Santi Paolo e Barnaba, restored for the occasion with the support of the Credito Bergamasco Foundation.