Dictionary of London Immigrants |||

1638-1642 - Romney Road (Greenwich)

Painter Artemisia Gentileschi was born in Rome on 8 July 1593. Her early training took place in the surroundings of her father’s (Orazio Gentileschi) studio. In 1612, she married the Florentine artist Pierantonio Stiattesi, when the couple left Rome for Florence. There, she had notable professional success. Belonging to the Florentine period is L’Autoritratto come suonatrice di liuto (‘Self-Portrait as Woman Playing a Lute’). Gentileschi stayed in Via del Corso, Rome, with her daughter and a servant from 1621 to 1626 (her husband no longer lived with her). In 1622 she completed her portrait masterpiece, Ritratto di gonfaloniere, and a few years later an innovative version of Giuditta e Oloferne. Around 1629 Gentileschi lived in Naples where she completed L’Annunciazione. She ranked among the most significant painters of the late 1620s. She moved to London in early 1638, although she was already in negotiations with the court of Charles I in 1635. Her estranged father died in London in February 1639 after working as a court painter for more than ten years. Lucrative commissions rather than reconciliation with her father prompted her departure from Italy. From the London period certainly belong L’Allegoria della pittura. She also took part in completing the panels for the Queen’s House (now at Romney Road), Greenwich, which had been commissioned from her father. She left London in 1641/2. She spent her final years in Naples where she died in 1652/3.

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