Italian Baroque Era Painter, 1575-1642
Italian painter, draughtsman and etcher. He was one of the greatest and most influential of the 17th-century Italian painters, whose sophisticated and complex art dominated the Bolognese school. A classicizing artist, deeply influenced by Greco-Roman art and by Raphael but also by the mannered elegance of Parmigianino's paintings, he sought an ideal beauty; his work was especially celebrated for its compositional and figural grace. In his religious art he was concerned with the expression of intense emotion, often charged with pathos; according to his biographer Malvasia, he boasted that he 'could paint heads with their eyes uplifted a hundred different ways' to give form to a state of ecstasy or divine inspiration.