Bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli Details
Some artists such as Gian Lorenzo Bernini managed to establish political connections with their arts during the Baroque Period. Bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli, which was carved by Giuliano Finelli is one of these examples too. In fact, Giuliano Finelli was the lesser-known apprentice of Bernini. Just like his master, he tried to stay close to one of the most powerful political figures in the 17th century, the Pope. He depicted Maria Barberini Duglioli to create fruitful connections and he managed to achieve his goal. However, the owner of the bust was not as lucky as Finelli.
Creation of Maria Barberini’s Bust
Finelli, born in 1601 in Torrano di Carrara, Italy, underwent official training in sculpture in Naples before relocating to Rome in 1622. While there, his talent in sculpting flourished, capturing the attention of the renowned artist Bernini. As a result, Bernini chose him as his apprentice.
Under Bernini’s mentorship, Finelli developed his artistic skills and expanded his network of influential contacts. Bernini, who frequently received offers from Pope Urban VIII, one of the most powerful political figures in Italy at the time, provided Finelli with remarkable opportunities to work on significant projects. Among these works was a bust of Maria Duglioli Barberini, the niece of Pope Urban VIII, who sadly passed away in 1621 due to complications during childbirth.
Through meticulous attention to detail, Finelli managed to revive the woman’s countenance in this commissioned piece from the 1620s. The sculptor meticulously carved the intricate details of her dress to such an extent that the realistic portrayal of the ruffled collar could deceive the observer’s eye, giving the impression of it being made of fabric rather than marble. Even the delicate necklace adorning the bust’s neck is visible.
Who Was Maria Barberini Duglioli?
Maria Barberini Duglioli was the niece of Pope Urbain VIII. Moreover, she was also the wife of Tolomeo Duglioli one of the members of the most powerful families in 17th century Italy. The roots and power of the family date back to the 11th century. The bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli is one of the artworks that was ordered by the family. Unfortunately, Maria Barberini Duglioli died at a very early age, when she was 22 years old while giving birth. The influence of the family let Pope Urbain VIII be elected and their power multiplied.
Why Is Bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli Important?
The Bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli is considered important because it is the best work of Giuliano Finelli. He carved the bust after 5 years after Maria Barberini Duglioli passed away. In addition to this, the bust includes the best examples of popular sculpting techniques of the era. This bust also helped Giuliano Finelli to earn a massive reputation in the political scene. As a result of this work and some other factors, he broke from Bernini’s workshop in 1629. The life-like carving of the Bust of Maria Barberini Duglioli is still considered one of the best busts in the world.