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Fra Bartolommeo

Pious Virtuoso

Lamentation by Fra Bartolomeo

Bartolomeo della Porta (c.1472–1517) was born in Savignano di Prato but spent most of his life in Florence, where he studied with Cosimo Rosselli. He was always religiously inclined, and almost all his paintings are of religious subjects. It got worse when he fell under the influence of Savonarola, who convinced him to become a Dominican friar. Bartolomeo was led to give up painting for four years—but not before Savonarola had him do the famous portrait of himself.

Fra Bartolomeo's Portrait of Savonarola

Bartolomeo was always a smooth stylist. After his return to painting he had a great influence on young Raphael, who became his friend and influenced him in turn. Bartolomeo traveled in his later years, and painted in Rome and Venice. In Florence, his works are in San Marco, Pitti Palace, San Salvi and Santa Maria Nuova.

Text © Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls

Images by: PD Art