The oil on canvas presented here shows the portrait of Pope Benedict XV, made by the great Genoese painter Giovanni Battista Torriglia, one of the greatest Italian artists of the second half of the nineteenth century.
Composer of works of genre scenes and everyday life and portraits of the Genoese nobility and bourgeoisie.
This painting explicitly represents the qualities and refinement of his paintings.
The canvas measures 56.5 x 47.5 cm, the frame 68 x 58 cm.
Giacomo Della Chiesa, who will become Pope with the name of Benedict XV, was born in Genoa on November 21, 1854, the third of four children, from the Marquis Giuseppe (belonging to a patrician family whose origins are traced back to the time of Sant'Ambrogio) and from Marchesa Giovanna Migliorati.
Consecrated Bishop by Pius X in the Sistine Chapel on December 22, 1907, Monsignor Della Chiesa is destined to lead the diocese of Bologna. On 25 May 1914 he was appointed cardinal. Less than three months later, on 20 August, following an attack of bronchopneumonia, Pius X died. These are dramatic days for the world. On 28 July Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia and Germany on 1 August declared war on Russia and two days later, on 3 August, on France. On 4 August the German troops, to attack France, invade neutral Belgium and on the same day Great Britain declares war on Germany. Almost all of Europe is engaged in war operations.
The drama of the war is the constant anguish that haunts Benedict XV throughout the entire pontificate.
The end of the war came in the autumn of 1918. Benedict XV, who did so much to mitigate the damage, continues to work in favor of those most affected, and with the Encyclical Paterno iam diu of 24 November 1919 invites those who care humanity to offer money, food and clothing, especially to help children, the most exposed category. The Pope's attention is also dedicated to the work of the International Peace Conference.
The work is well preserved and presents the drawing, as well as the typical palette of Torriglia: in the first canvas; tiny and limited restorations emerge at the Wood lamp; during the checks with solvents, it was found to be authentic in all its parts.
The painting is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity and lawful origin from our gallery with photos as required by law.
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The coeval frame is kindly offered as a gift therefore we do not accept complaints nor are we responsible for any damage during shipping.