This work offers a rediscovery of the eighteenth-century sculptor Francesco Bertos by the eminent British art historian, Charles Avery, a specialist in European - and particularly Italian - sculpture. Bertos lived and died near Padua, Italy, and specialised in producing eye-catching, sometimes rather bizarre, mythological, allegorical and religious groups in marble or bronze. The art of Bertos is characterised by a constant search for dynamic movement, in a similar vein to contemporary paintings by Tiepolo and others, especially their tumbling groups of figures in airy trompe l'oeil ceilings. Indeed, many of the figures in Bertos' sculptural groups seem to fly and he was even summoned before the Inquisition to account for his preternatural skills in carving.Richly illustrated with almost a hundred colour and almost three hundred black and white photographs, the essays reveal his noble patrons in the Veneto, along with the royal family in Turin and Peter the Great in Russia, delve into his sources of inspiration, attempt to clarify his complex iconography, illustrate his daring techniques, introduce Fasolato, a sculptor follower of Bertos, and track Bertos' fortune in British and American collecting in the twentieth century.
Appendixes list Bertos' various signatures and the locations where his works can be found, as well as a chronological summary of his documented career. This lively and scholarly publication ends with a pioneering catalogue raisonne documenting all of the sculptor's known works, each illustrated with a black and white image.
Publisher: Umberto Allemandi & Co