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Pisanello

Pisanello (pēzänĕlˈlō) [key], c.1395–1455?, Italian medalist, painter, and draftsman of the early Renaissance. He was also called Vittore Pisano, but his real name was Antonio Pisano. His art shows the influence of Gentile da Fabriano, whom he assisted in the ducal palace in Venice. Nothing remains of the Venetian frescoes or of those that he executed in the Lateran, Rome, or in Castello, Pavia. The only frescoes that have survived are those in Verona, the Annunciation in San Fermo, and St. George and the Princess in Sant' Anastasia. Pisanello was in great demand by the leading patrons of the time. He stayed at the courts of Mantua, Ferrara, Milan, Urbino, and Naples, working mainly on portraits. He is the first important Renaissance artist to use the medal form and to revive the antique style of portraiture. His medals are greatly valued for their historic as well as their artistic merit. Among them are portraits of Filippo Visconti, Lionello d'Este, Francesco Sforza, Alfonso V, and Sigismondo Malatesta (all: Victoria and Albert Mus., London). Pisanello was also a superb draftsman. The Vallardi Codex (Louvre) contains his studies for paintings, antique motifs, costumes, and animals, all depicted with keen perception. Among the rare panel paintings that have survived are the Vision of St. Eustache and Saints Anthony and George (National Gall., London); portraits of Lionello d'Este (Bergamo), Ginevra d'Este (Louvre), and the Emperor Sigismondo (Vienna).

See studies by E. Sindona (1964) and G. Paccagnini (1973).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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