Born in Cremona on 18 August 1841 to Giacomo, an appreciated violinist and conductor, he is a pupil of Enrico Scuri at the Carrara Academy in Bergamo. After ten years of training, he moved to Milan (1862), where he immediately gained notoriety as an illustrator and caricaturist for humorous newspapers and magazines (Man of stone, Mefistofele, Spirito folletto). In 1869 he obtained the Mylius prize at the Brera Academy with the painting Lesson of botany. In 1872 he was one of the founders of the Milanese Artistic Family and, later, he was the animator of worldly events, including the famous exhibition "The Indisposition of Fine Arts" of 1881. His other paintings, reproducing genre and costume scenes of the Milanese environment or humorous depictions (such as condemned to death) soon became popular and were reproduced several times, even abroad. In 1883 he was appointed councilor of the Brera Academy which, ten years later, called him to succeed Casnedi in the chair of figure drawing, a position that would cease in 1921 due to age limits (among his students we remember Ambrogio Alciati, Attilio Andreoli, Giuseppe Maggi and Giuseppe Porta). In 1894 he obtained a gold medal in Vienna with the painting The Mother of the Redeemer. His last important work, The Dream of the Underworld (painted for the Curletti chapel in the monumental cemetery of Milan), dates from 1901. He is also a portraitist (Cremona, Ala Ponzone Civic Museum: Portrait of Amilcare Ponchielli, his friend; Milan, Ospedale Maggiore: portraits by Ignazio Peregalli, 1883, Francesco Osculati, 1890 and Achille Nebuloni, 1910; Piacenza, Galleria Ricci Oddi: Portrait of his father, 1880), lithographer and fresco decorator; his works include the frescoes of the church of Rosazza Biellese (1879), of Villa Maraini in Nice (destroyed), of the theater of San José in Costa Rica (large panels with allegories of Poetry, Music and Dance) and in other foreign cities (London, Brussels, Montevideo, Buenos Aires). He also dedicates himself to studies on Lombard painting and in particular on Eleuterio Pagliano, Mosè Bianchi and Cesare Tallone (twenty-nine of his archival volumes containing handwritten and printed documents, datable between 1853 and 1928, are kept at the Art Library of Sforzesco Castle in Milan). His works are kept in private and public Italian collections, including, in addition to those already mentioned, the Turri collection in Milan (various drawings) and the Civic Gallery of Modern Art in Milan (Mattino sulla vecchia strada di Maggianico and Il Pierina's chicken coop, assigned to the City of Milan by the Society for Fine Arts, respectively in 1881 and 1910; Laundry, 1900, donated by Vittore Grubicy De Dragon in 1920; Self-portrait, purchased from the author in 1922 ; St. Matthew the Evangelist, 1879).


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