Antonello da Messina (ca. 1430--1479) has long been famous for his mastery of the technique of oil painting, for his role in the dissemination of the Netherlandish style in northern Italy, and for introducing new artistic impulses in Venice in the mid-1470s. Following his premature death in 1479, his son Jacobello took over the workshop and, with three of his cousins, Antonio and Pietro de Saliba and Salvo d'Antonio, continued painting Antonello's compositions for a northern Italian audience from their Venice base for the next decade and a half. In the mid-1490s, they returned to Sicily, where they continued to paint in the master's style well into the sixteenth century.
The workshop production is a true indication of the continuing positive reception of Antonello's work after the master's death. This study examines the four members of the workshop, drawing from the contracts, wills, records of payments, and paintings as source material to reconstruct the activity of these artists in both northern and southern Italy. The study focuses on the relationship between prototypes and copies during the workshop's Venetian period, with examinations of two series of small devotional paintings. The catalogue raisonné, which includes detailed entries of all known works by the four members of Antonello da Messina's workshop, is the first complete overview of this workshop's production.
Thomas Skorupa studied art history, German literature, and comparative literature in New York and Berlin. He earned his doctorate at the Freie Universität Berlin with this dissertation. He works as an editor in Berlin.