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Mattia Preti

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Mattia Preti
17th-century Calabrese
(Taverna, Italy, 1613 - 1699, Valletta, Malta)

Preti’s artistic formation was principally Roman, with a foundation in late Caravaggesque naturalism, then attraction toward the more summary and dynamic styles of the later Emilian painters Guercino and Lanfranco. He worked mostly in Rome until the early 1650s, then alternately between that city and Naples, with some trips north, before settling in Malta in the early 1660s. In the recapitulation of early Baroque styles and their extension into a decorative manner of large massing, mobile light, and impetuous handling, his mature work prepares important aspects of eighteenth-century painting. Specifically, his style determined the later school of Naples.

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