Offered by Ars Antiqua
Old Master Painting
Giuseppe Ruoppolo (circa 1630 - 1710)
Still life with copper dishes, cuttlefish and oysters
Oil on canvas, cm 102 x 152
Frame 122 cm x 172 cm
The absolute authorship of this painting, although not signed, to Giuseppe Ruoppolo, is to be sought in the counterpart, in fact initialled and now scattered. The two canvases were kept until the seventies in the collection of the antique dealer Algranti, then divided through different events of the market. Both depict a shelf of generously arranged branches, lit by elastic rays that swell the bodies of the specimens.
From the refined preference of the Ruoppolo for copper victuals, he left a trace written by Bernardo De Dominici, valuable biographer, testifying that the artist "also painted in imitation of his uncle Gio. Battista cose di Rame" (Vite des peintres, sculpteurs et architectes napolitains, III, Naples 1743, p. 299). The reference to Ruoppolo’s uncle is fundamental for the reconstruction of Giuseppe’s artistic history. It is only known from the sources that he died in 1710 in his eighties, from which it appears that he was born in 1630, and that the monogram "GRU", with which the homonymous monogram was once recognized, is in fact to refer to Joseph, who in the painting Interior of kitchen with branches and provisions (already in Naples in collection Dalla Vecchia), had affixed such a signature. The artist studied with his almost contemporary uncle (1629-1693), the main editor of Neapolitan Baroque naturamorfisme, himself a pupil of Paolo Porpora and a contemporary of Salvator Rosa. Unlike his uncle, however, Giuseppe produced works similar to the naturamorfism of the early 17th century, paying homage to the dawn of Neapolitan production.
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