Texts by Patrick Mauriès, Florence Delay, Sylvie Béguin, Alessandro Tosi, Gianni Guadalupi
1987 / 220 PAGES.
Language: Bilingual edition: Italian / French
Francis I of France called upon eccentric Italian artists to transform a crumbling castle into an architectural wonder. This volume is dedicated to the shameless and lovely Venuses who, from the walls, delighted the eyes of the Valois.
Francis I, a hunting enthusiast, very sensitive to feminine charm, a great admirer of the artists he met in the Italian courts at the time of the famous conquests, made his home in the forests of Fontainebleau, where a hunting lodge became the most sumptuous and famous palace in the known world. Around the king, there materialised mythological figures – nymphs, naiads, Graces, Fates, goddesses – and real people circulated –queens, lovers, courtesans – all of whom Italian artists were called upon to immortalise in the frescoes, stuccos, tapestries, sculptures, and fountains. Much remains of the splendid apartments, and much has been lost, but the preparatory drawings, the "sanguigne" and the designs have survived. Along with Rosso Fiorentino, Primaticcio, Nicolò dell'Abate, Cellini, Penni, and Ghisi, there were also painters from beyond Italy. A fascinating, rarefied and symbolic story , told by leading art history specialists and beautifully illustrated.