Camerino D'Alabastro, Palazzo Ducale, Ferrara

   The Camerino d'Alabastro was the study of Alfonso I d'Este, Duke of Ferrara, a room built in alabaster, hence its appellation. It was conceived in direct competition with the studiolo of Isabella d'Este, Alfonso's sister. For its decoration, Alfonso commissioned a series of erotic mythologies from the most important masters of the era, including Giovanni Bellini, Raphael, and Titian, based on the ekphrases provided by Philostratus the Elder of works he saw in a villa in Naples in the third century. Giovanni Bellini rendered the Feast of the Gods (1514; Washington, National Gallery), Raphael was assigned the Triumph of Bacchus, and Fra Bartolomeo the Worship of Venus. Fra Bartolomeo died in 1517 and Raphael in 1520, both leaving their works unexecuted. Alfonso then hired Titian, who rendered the Worship of Venus (1518; Madrid, Prado), based on Fra Bartolomeo's preparatory drawing, and then also the Bacchanal of the Andrians (1518-1523; Madrid, Prado) and Bacchus and Ariadne (1520-1522; London, National Gallery). When the d'Este line died out at the end of the 16th century, Ferrara reverted back to the Papal States and the paintings in the Camerino d'Alabastro were removed and dispersed. As a result, debate exists as to the original placement of the works within the room and its significance.

Historical dictionary of Renaissance art. . 2008.

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.