Francesco Primaticcio

Francesco Primaticcio
Years of life: 1504 – 1570
Artist's Teachers: Giulio Romano
Art Movement: Mannerism (Late Renaissance)
Genre: Religious , Mythology
Country: Italy
Century: XVI

Painter, born and trained in Bologna. Worked with Giulio Romano in Mantua. In 1532 he moved to France under the patronage of Francis I. Became an assistant to Rosso Fiorentino; appointed official art buyer to the king.

He settled in Fontainebleau but returned to Italy regularly on art-buying trips. After Fiorentino’s death, Primaticcio became head of the Fontainebleau school. After the death of Francis I, he worked for Henry II as Surveyor of Works.

Note the murals and high stucco reliefs. They are characterized by expression, overloaded composition, long, graceful figures with small heads.

Francesco Primaticcio’s major works are The Rape of Helen, 1530–39 (County Durham, UK: Bowes Museum); Study of God, 1555 (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum).


  1. Robert Cumming. Art: complete encyclopedia. – 512 p. – Moscow: Astrel, 2005.


  • Holy Family with St Elizabeth

    between 1541 and 1543

    Holy Family with St Elizabeth   •  between 1541 and 1543

  • Ulysses and Penelope


    Ulysses and Penelope  •  1563

  • The Abduction of Helene

    between 1530 and 1539

    The Abduction of Helene  •  between 1530 and 1539

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