Portrait of a Physician

Alessandro Longhi – original by, Benátsky maliar z polovice 18. storočia

measurements: výška 96.0 cm, šírka 75.5 cm
work type: painting
genre: portrait
material: canvas
technique: oil
institution: Slovenská národná galéria, SNG
inventory number: O 304
in collections:
licence: Creative Commons License public domain
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This painting represents the official portrait of a physician. His identity is immediately obvious, although we have yet to establish it due to a shortage of other information. He holds a pin in his left hand; his right hand points at the book in
front of him., in which we can read the words ECCE SANGUINI.

The artist is Alessandro Loghi, a competent Venetian portraitist. He adhered to the compositional conventions for portraits of noblemen. However, he tried to eliminate the formalism of portraits through a very stylized depiction, similar to the approach of Giuseppe Ghisladi (Bergamo 1655 – Bergamo 1743).

He paid great attention to detail while applying a relaxed style. Such qualities as the individual and unique features and the nature of the textile, which were ignored in official portraits, were important for him. The fine technique and harmony of colors make the painting interesting. 

This painting is one of a new category of portraits created around the middle of the 18th century in the North of Italy by combining capriccio and official portraits, which were subject to considerable formalism. 

The relaxed method of presentation became a conscious requirement for portraits. This allowed the client to show off his taste and ability to appreciate the skills of the portraitist. However, bust cuts became increasingly popular and the daring experiment represented by this painting quickly disappeared. 

Zuzana Ludiková ● LUDIKOVÁ, Zuzana - BURAN, Dušan. Talianska maľba = Italian Painting. Bratislava : Slovenská národná galéria, 2013. 242 strán. ISBN 9788080591748.