Domenico Fetti

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Fetti, Domenico


(also spelled Feti). Born circa 1588 in Rome (?); died Apr. 16, 1623, in Venice. Italian painter.

Fetti studied in Rome under L. Cigoli. He worked in Mantua beginning in 1613 and in Venice beginning in 1622. Influenced by Caravaggio, A. Elsheimer, and the masters of the 16th-century Venetian school, he painted primarily biblical and mythological scenes, for example, The Healing of Tobit (early 1620’s; the Hermitage, Leningrad). He also painted portraits. Fetti is particularly noted for his small paintings depicting parables from the Gospels (Dresden Picture Gallery; Pitti Gallery, Florence).

Fetti treated religious paintings as genre scenes, setting them in landscapes that harmoniously reflected the emotions of his subjects. His works are noteworthy for their precise composition, pure and expressive palette of bright, cold colors, and broad and free brushwork.


Askew, P. “The Parable Paintings of Domenico Fetti.” The Art Bulletin, 1961, vol. 43, no. 1, pp. 21–45.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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One of the few to find a place is Domenico Fetti's striking study for the head of David in his David with the Head of Goliath in the Pushkin State Museum in Moscow.
Fabbri's assessment of the likelihood that Domenico Fetti's 'Ritratto di comico' is a genuine Monteverdi portrait could have been carried one step further: he calls the identification 'not at all convincing' (p.