This spring, The Frick Collection will reunite a series of preparatory paintings and drawings related to Giambattista Tiepolo’s (1696 – 1770) first significant project outside of Venice, a series of ceiling frescoes from the Palazzo Archinto in Milan, executed between 1730 and 1731. The paintings were commissioned by Count Carlo Archinto (1670 – 1732), whose family distinguished itself in the 17th and 18th centuries under both the rulers of Milan. Tragically, the Palazzo was bombed during World War II and its interior was completely destroyed. The only record of the finished frescoes that remained were a series of black and white photographs taken between 1897 and the late 1930s.
“Tiepolo in Milan: The Lost Frescoes of Palazzo Archinto” opens on April 16 and continues through July 14, 2019. It will present approximately fifty objects from collections in the United States and Europe to tell the story of this important commission. It will feature five surviving preparatory paintings and drawings by the artist, among them the Frick’s oil sketch of Perseus and Andromeda. Since the Frick does not loan works that were purchased by the institution’s founder, the New York City museum is the only place where these paintings and drawings can be seen together. Other complementary drawings and prints by Tiepolo will be on view, as well as several books of illustrations by the artist that were commissioned by Filippo Argelati, the Archinto family librarian and a noted intellectual of the day.
The exhibition is curated by Xavier F. Salomon, the Frick’s Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator, with Andrea Tomezzoli, Professor at the University of Padua and Denis Ton, Curator of the Musei Civici in Belluno, Italy. The Frick Collection is located at 1 East 70th Street in New York City.