Wallraf-Richartz-Museum & Fondation Corboud

Carlone was one of the busiest painters of his time; he worked in Austria, Germany, Italy, producing mainly wall and ceiling paintings, as well as large oil paintings for churches and palaces. With his dynamic compositions, the Lombrady artist Carlo Innocenzo Carlone (1686 – 1775) is considered a pioneer of the Rococo. The Wallraf recently acquired six of his works on permanent loan from the collection of Joseph and Maria Matzker. As you can see from the exhibition ‘Carlo Carlone – Oil sketches from the Rococo period’, they are a delightful addition to the Wallraf’s collection.

Growing up in a family of artists, Carlone began painting early. He completed his training with stays in Venice and in 1715 he settled in Vienna, where he made a name for himself both among the clergy and the nobility. His good reputation spread as far as southern Germany, where Carlone produced significant works for the palaces of Ludwigsburg and Ansbach. After working intensively in Northern Italy and the nearby Ticino region, the artist moved back to Germany for a major commission between 1747 and 1750: decorations/murals in Augustusburg Palace in Brühl, considered one of the first important works of the Rococo period in Germany. His estate contained about 700 paintings, sketches and drawings. It was primarily these sketches and designs which led to a reassessment of Carlone’s art in the late 20th century and helped revive his fame.