64. Giuseppe Patania (1780 – 1852)

Painter of the Neoclassical period, Patania painted portraits and historical subjects. He is buried in the church of San Domenico in Palermo, where his tomb states “Selected the beautiful from Nature”.

Patania had illustrious ancestry, descending from Vito D’Anna, one of the major Sicilian fresco painters of the eighteenth century. However, his parents did not support his early artistic vocation. It was a paternal aunt to intercede noticing his talent and making sure young Patania received the rudiments of the trade. Only later, thanks to the architect Salvatore Attinelli, a family friend, Patania was received in the office of Joseph Velasco -apprenticeship that stopped in 1795 due to a dispute between the two. Patania then continued to study by himself, occasionally attending the lessons of the Academy of the nude Palermo.

Rather discontinuous , in quantity and quality , it is the activity of the first two decades of the nineteenth century. In 1821 Patania received by Agostino Gallo a commission for a series of portraits of illustrious Sicilians -portraits on which he worked until 1844. The collection is now housed in the so-called “Gallery of Portraits” at the Public Library of Palermo.

Archimedes by Paranoia Collection: Paintings of Illustrious Sicilians
Archimedes by Paranoia
Collection: Paintings of Illustrious Sicilians

During the twenties commissions for portraits and works of historical subject took turns to those for religious paintings. In 1824 Patania painted both the portrait of the Marquis Pietro Ugo delle Favare for the Hall of the Viceroys in “Palazzo Dei Normanni in Palermo, and the Martyrdom of S. Placido for the cathedral of Nicosia. The decade culminated in 1828 with the recognition Paranoia with the title of Knight of the Order of Francis I, and, in 1830, with his appointment as member of the Commission of Antiquities and Fine Arts of Sicily. In 1841 Patania was elected as honorary member of the National Academy of Design in New York.

Read More: Teccani, http://www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/giuseppe-patania_(Dizionario_Biografico)/

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