Guido Reni (Italian, 1575–1642) was a Baroque artist and a member of the Bolognese school of painting. Reni took an interest in drawing as a child, and was apprenticed to Flemish painter Denys Calvaert (Flemish, b. ca.1540–1619) at the age of 10. In 1599, he was accepted in the guild of painters, and, beginning in 1601, divided his time between his studios in Rome and Bologna, becoming one of the premier painters during the papacy of Paul V.

In his religious and mythological paintings, Reni developed a style that combined Baroque exuberance and complexity with classical restraint. His works are characterized by graceful figures that reflect the ideals of antiquity with light tones, soft colors, and free brushwork. His frescos, commissioned by the pope and the Scipione Cardinal Borghese, among other patrons, became some of his most well-known works. Reni’s technique was used by the Bolognese school, and became the standard for Italian printmakers of the era.

Reni died in Bologna in 1642, and was buried in the Basilica of San Domenico.

Timeline

1575
Born in Bologna, Italy
1642
Died in Bologna, Italy