Paolo Monaldi (Rome, 1720 ca – Rome, 1780)
River landscape with folk scene
Oil on canvas, 164×129 cm.
Much of Monaldi’s corpus has merged, over time, into Andrea Locatelli’s production, still not making it possible today to understand the actual vastness of the painter’s production.
From some sources we know that Monaldi worked all his life in Lazio and was a pupil of the Roman landscape painter Paolo Anesi: some studies, however, also support a discipleship at the more famous Locatelli.
In this painting we perceive various influences such as the studies of the ruins and landscapes of the Flemish and Bamboccianti, to which Monaldi makes a lot of reference; but the breadth of the view and the veiled atmosphere look to Locatelli as a point of reference. Despite his predilection for the popular genre, bambocciante, combined with refined views, he had several commissions from noble families of collectors in Rome such as the Chigi and Rospigliosi.
The popular scenes represented here are read, descriptive and constructed with large gestures, but they do not have an ironic intent, they do not want to amuse the observer. If anything, our gaze represents an external observer, who witnesses the daily unfolding of life, almost Arcadian, of the small town in contact with nature.
- Busiri Vici, Roman landscape triptych of the eighteenth century. Paolo Anesi, P. M., Alessio De’ Marchis, Rome 1976, pp. 73-156;
Our reference: AF00339