17th century

An Ardent Patron: Cardinal Camillo Massimo and his Antiquarian and Artistic Circle

440 pages, paperback, 242 x 168 mm, 180 colour illustrations
PRICE: £40.00
ISBN: 978 1 903470 98 5

 

By Lisa Beaven

This book examines the collecting practice and patronage of Camillo Massimo (1620–1677) in the context of the society that produced him, and demonstrates how his importance lies not simply in his own activities as a patron and collector, but in his role as an active force promoting particular artists and enterprises in Rome and in his legacy and impact on the following century.

As artist, relative of Vicenzo Giustiani, protégé of Angeloni, and friend of Bellori and Poussin, Massimo was able to move easily among a number of intersecting social circles. As a contributor to the Galleria Giustiana he had access to a large circle of foreign artists, including Claude Lorrain and François Duquesnoy. Massimo emerges from this study as a discerning patron with a clearly defined taste who created a collection remarkable for its coherence.

Chapters cover Massimo’s family background and early influences, his role as Papal nuncio to the court of Philip IV of Spain, and as art agent for the Altieri papacy, as well as his exile in Roccasecca dei Volsci. Using primary evidence in the form of the inventory, a manuscript building evaluation, prints and Lafage’s drawings, Massimo’s piano nobile is reconstructed and the way in which he used his collection to reiterate particular themes and project a certain image to his visitors is analyzed.

Published in association with Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica

"She describes in detail his life, achievements and contribution as an antiquarian, collector and patron of art and architecture, and her book is a vital contribution to 17th-century Roman studies. This book is packed with scholarly research and the illustrations are exemplary in their clarity and pertinence to the next." – Clare Ford-Wille, The Art Newspaper, November 2012
"This book is an important addition to patronal studies. It presents a clear case for the exceptional nature of Camillo Massimo's patronage, which was based on an unusual ability to unite the passions of a collector with an active and creative patronage." – Helen Langdon, The Burlington Magazine, July 2011

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