Pompeo Batoni was born in 1708, the son of a goldsmith of Lucca and one of the most ostentatiously wealthy and successful painters of the 19th century Roman school. He carried out monumental church commissions and painted religious and mythological canvases, many for eminent foreign patrons.
One of his teachers was the Master Sebastiano Conca. He won his greatest reknown for smoothly executed portraits of popes, monarchs and British gentry and nobility. He was perhaps the most successful Italian portraitist and his Roman studio was besieged with clients. At best, Batoni could paint with ravishing grace. He celebrated the silky and luxurious feminity of the young women by whom, to the envy of
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