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Portrait of Francesca Gommi Maratti

Portrait of Francesca Gommi Maratti

c. 1701

Carlo Maratti

(Italian, 1625-1713)

Oil on canvas

Overall: 98.5 x 74.5 cm (38 3/4 x 29 5/16 in.)

Mr. and Mrs. William H. Marlatt Fund 2018.1

Fun Fact

The sitter holds a drawing representing Venus making Cupid's weapons, symbolizing the power of Love to conquer all.

Description

In 1700 Carlo Maratti’s wife died, permitting him to marry his long-time mistress, Francesca Gommi, who began modeling for the artist in the 1670s and was the mother of his only child, Faustina. This painting was presumably painted shortly after the marriage as an homage from the artist to his new wife. To introduce an allegorical element into the composition, Maratti included a painting within a painting—in this case a drawing depicting Venus forging the love-darts of her adolescent son Cupid, suggesting that love will conquer all.

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