Italian painter. Active mainly in Ferrara and the district around the Po delta, he was one of the most outstanding figures in Emilian classicism during the first half of the 16th century. In 1497 Garofalo father paid Boccaccio Boccaccino to teach his son the rudiments of painting. Garofalo first works were directly influenced by the Cremonese painter, to whom they were formerly even attributed. They consist of a series of small paintings depicting the Virgin and Child. The example in the Ca d Oro in Venice must have been Garofalo first painting and reveals not only the lessons learned from Boccaccino, but also signs of the influence of Domenico Panetti (c. 1460-before 1513), traditionally recorded as his first master. Another Virgin and Child (Assisi, Perkins priv. col.) shows signs of the early influence of Lorenzo Costa the elder, while the example in the Nationalmuseum, Copenhagen, shows a similarity with the early works of his contemporary, Lodovico Mazzolino. A particularly important project in Ferrara during the earliest years of the 16th century, involving numerous highly skilled artists, was the fresco decoration of the oratory of the Concezione. The frescoes (Ferrara, Pin. N.) represent a significant development in the city art. Garofalo hand has been identified in the Presentation in the Temple, in which he reveals a familiarity not only with local art, but also with the high points of Bolognese classicism, whose greatest exponents were Francesco Francia and Lorenzo Costa the elder. Around 1505, Garofalo works show a close familiarity with artistic developments in Bologna, in particular the mature style of Costa and the decoration in 1505-6, by Francesco Francia, Costa, Aspertini and others, of the oratory of S Cecilia in S Giacomo Maggiore. Garofalo Virgin Enthroned between SS Martin and Rosalia (Florence, Uffizi), created for Codigoro Cathedral, should be seen within this context, whereas the small altarpiece for the Arcivescovado, Ferrara, although executed at the same time, shows early, if faint, signs of the influence of Venetian painting of the period.
John the Baptist in the Wilderness fg
Panel, 42 x 28 cm
Staatliche Museen, Berlin