The Etchings of Bartolomeo Pinelli

One Italian artist who never got his props was Bartolomeo Pinelli (b 20 November 1781). Pinelli was an illustrator and engraver. While his work is clearly an accurate representation of daily Roman life, he lived and died in desolation.

Bartolomeo Pinelli’s artwork provides historical data on the costumes, rituals, traditions, and living conditions of the Romans in the late 1700s to early 1800s. Another recurring motif in the illustrations is Bartolomeo Pinelli’s Cane Corso. He also illustrated epic poems and made copper engravings.

Bartolomeo Pinelli Art Themes and Motifs

La Storia del Brigante Decapitito’ (Story of the Decapitated Brigand) described the decapitation of a sleeping brigand by his wife for killing their offspring. Although Bartolomeo Pinelli intended the prints as a critique of the aristocracy’s unchallenged imposition and the repercussions on the lower classes, they did not have any effect.

La Storia del Brigante Decapitito

‘Pinelli alla Trattoria’ (Pinelli at the Restaurant) describes Pinelli’s virile humour. Here, he pokes fun at the ‘tourists’ and their style, indicated by the hats hung on either wall. The etching also marks the distinction between the working classes and the rulers.

Pinelli alla Trattoria