The Baroque and Romantic Painting of Roberto Ferri

A painting of a woman holding a skullCUPO FUOCO II, oil on canvas

Roberto Ferri is an Italian painter whose work is heavily inspired by Baroque and romantic painting styles. The artist renders realistic human figures in dramatic postures and lush, symbolic scenes and settings. 


A painting of an angel will black wingsANGELO CADUTO, oil on canvas

 

I really appreciate the dramatic lighting, that Ferri uses in his paintings -- deep, almost black backgrounds and warm skin tones and highlights suggest the irregular light of candles or oil lamps, lending a classical feeling to even the most experimental of Ferri’s subjects. The artist’s figures are photorealistic in the vein of Caravaggio -- the textures of skin, muscle, and hair rendered in almost grotesque detail, the figures dancing across the canvases in languid, dance-like movements. 

 

Recent paintings seem to focus particularly on movements of the body, with the artist producing nudes in sparing compositions, embellished with folds of raw fabric or vanitas objects like skulls or rosaries. The works are sombre, balancing luxury with penitence.


A painting of a male figure in deep shadowIN GERMINE, oil on canvas

Written by: Dallas Jeffs

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