Painter of the Baroque period born in Monreale, known as il Monrealese, nicknamed by contemporaries as the Raphael of Sicily. Pietro initially trained with his father, a painter and mosaicist. His first dated work, St Anthony Abbot (1626) was painted for the church of Sant’ Antonio Abate.
The development of his style owed much to Anthony van Dyck, who visited Sicily in 1624 and whose altarpiece, the Madonna of the Rosary in the oratory of Santa Maria del Rosario in Palermo was highly influential for local artists. Injured during the revolution in Palermo in 1647, Pietro died from his wounds.
References: The J. Paul Getty Museum, http://www.getty.edu/art/collection/artists/564/pietro-novelli-italian-sicilian-1603-1647/