Jacopo da Pontormo

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Pontormo, Jacopo da

(yä`kōpō dä pōntôr`mō), 1494–1556, Florentine painter, one of the creators of mannerismmannerism,
a style in art and architecture (c.1520–1600), originating in Italy as a reaction against the equilibrium of form and proportions characteristic of the High Renaissance.
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. His real name was Jacopo Carrucci. He studied with Andrea del SartoSarto, Andrea del
, 1486–1531, Florentine painter of the High Renaissance. He painted chiefly religious subjects. In 1509 he was commissioned by the Servites to decorate their Cloisters of the Annunziata in Florence. His five frescoes there, illustrating the life of St.
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, Leonardo da VinciLeonardo da Vinci
, 1452–1519, Italian painter, sculptor, architect, musician, engineer, and scientist, b. near Vinci, a hill village in Tuscany. The versatility and creative power of Leonardo mark him as a supreme example of Renaissance genius.
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, Mariotto AlbertinelliAlbertinelli, Mariotto
, 1474–1515, Italian painter. A product of the Florentine school of the High Renaissance, Albertinelli was influenced by Leonardo and Raphael. His best-known works are The Visitation (1503; Uffizi) and The Annunciation (1510; Accademia, Florence).
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, and Piero di CosimoPiero di Cosimo
, 1462–1521, Florentine painter, whose name was Piero di Lorenzo. He adopted the name of his master, Cosimo Rosselli, whom he accompanied to Rome in 1482 and assisted in the decorating of the Sistine Chapel.
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. While studying with Sarto, Pontormo met Il RossoRosso, Il
, 1495–1540, Italian painter, one of the founders of mannerism, b. Florence. His real name was Giovan Battista di Iacopo di Gasparre. Influences of Andrea del Sarto and Pontormo are evident in his first work, The Assumption
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, who became his main rival. Among his earliest religious works were the altarpieces for the churches of Santa Maria Novella and Santa Annunziata, Florence. His altar for the church of San Michele Visdomini, Florence, is considered by many to be the first mannerist work in recorded history. Pontormo was also a talented portraitist; he made full use of his abilities in his Passion Cycle (1522–25) for the Florentine Certosa family, in which he gave animation and presence to several mythological scenes. His Lady with a Lap Dog is one of the first mannerist portraits. It is said that Pontormo was influenced by MichelangeloMichelangelo Buonarroti
, 1475–1564, Italian sculptor, painter, architect, and poet, b. Caprese, Tuscany. Early Life and Work

Michelangelo drew extensively as a child, and his father placed him under the tutelage of Ghirlandaio, a respected artist of the day.
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 and DürerDürer, Albrecht
, 1471–1528, German painter, engraver, and theoretician, most influential artist of the German school, b. Nuremberg. Early Life and Work
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 as his work matured. For much of his life, Pontormo was a recluse. He painted several frescoes from 1546 to 1556, but these have since been lost. He is remembered mainly for his drawings from this period. Examples of his art are in the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the Fogg Museum, Cambridge; and the Yale Univ. Art Gallery. Pontormo also kept a diary in which he chronicled his neurotic obsessions.


See J. Cox-Rearick, The Drawings of Pontormo (2 vol., 1981).

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

Pontormo, Jacopo da


(real name, Jacopo Carrucci). Born May 24, 1494, in Pontormo, Tuscany; buried Jan. 2, 1557, in Florence. Italian painter. Representative of the Florentine school.

Pontormo studied with M. Albertinelli and Piero di Cosimo between 1507 and 1512. He was influenced by Michelangelo, especially beginning in the 1530’s, and by A. Dürer. His early works were akin to the art of the High Renaissance masters, such as Andrea del Sarto, with whom he collaborated around 1512. In the 1520’s he became one of the founders of mannerism. Pontormo’s masterly, at times eccentric, compositional skill and sharp powers of observation are manifested with particular power in the frescoes of bucolic allegories in a villa at Poggio a Caiano (1520). Inherent in his later religious compositions, such as Deposition (1526–28, Church of Santa Felicità, Florence), are traits of inner anxiety and excited tension of color. This is also true of his portraits, such as Portrait of a Woman (c. 1543–45, Uffizi Gallery, Florence). Also noteworthy is Three Graces, a sanguine (c. 1535–36, Uffizi Gallery, Florence). Pontormo’s studies and sketches are remarkable for their unusual expressiveness of contour and flexibility and liveliness of line.


Rearick, J. C. The Drawings of Pontormo, vols. 1–2. Cambridge, 1964.
Forster, K. W. Pontormo. [Munich, 1966.]
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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(22.) Jacopo da Pontormo, letter dated February 18, 1546, in Varchi, Due lezzioni di M.