Banquet in Rome on Testaccio Hill

Bartolomeo Pinelli

  • Banquet in Rome on Testaccio Hill 2
  • Banquet in Rome on Testaccio Hill 3
Basic information
Bartolomeo Pinelli
Banquet in Rome on Testaccio Hill
Date of creation
etching watercolor
Dimensions (height x width, cm)
10.3 x 16.1
Information about author
Bartolomeo Pinelli
Artist's lifetime
Bartolomeo Pinelli (1781, Rome – 1835, ibid.) was an Italian painter, engraver, and sculptor. He was the son of the ceramist G. B. Pinelli. Bartolomeo Pinelli was born in ​​the Trastevere district (over the River Tiber). Street sketches of that western suburb of Rome repeatedly appeared in his graphic works later. He studied in Bologna, later on – at Accademia di San Luca (Academy of Saint Luke) in Rome. He attended the Academy of Felice Giani, an Italian painter of the Neoclassic style, from whom he inherited the drawing style. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, Bartolomeo Pinelli took an interest in the engravings of the Renaissance, namely in the works by Marcantonio Raimondi, and started making etchings and lithographs out of his drawings. In 1809, Pinelli created his first series of watercolor etchings – Collection of 50 picturesque costumes (Raccola di cinquanta costumi pittoreschi). The album was reissued in 1814 and 1815. In 1816, a new version of the album under the title Nuova Raccolta di Cinquanta costumi pittoreschi incisi di acqua forte was released. Most of the Lviv engravings are from this series. The central theme of the artist's creative work is genre scenes (Costumi), which he saw in Rome, Naples, as well as the provinces of Abruzzo and Molise. Pinelli's engravings have not only artistic value but also carry important ethnographic information. In the 1820s and 1830s, the artist created drawings and engravings for poems by Torquato Tasso (1827–1829) and the novel “Don Quixote” (1834) by Miguel de Cervantes. One of Pinelli's famous series of drawings is Seven Hills of Rome (Sette colli di Roma) (1827–1830). The artist's works are housed in many Italian museums as well as in collections of other countries.
Object description
It’s a version of the composition by Pinelli of the 1810s from the album Raccolta (1809). The previous engraving depicted a multi-figure composition with five gentlemen and three ladies sitting at a table under an oak tree; in the background behind a ravine, there was a group of dancers. The same version was published in the edition of 1814. Instead, the so-called Lviv later version is a foreground composition, where two ladies are sitting and three gentlemen are standing and sitting at a table near an old tree in the background of a mountain peak. One of the gentlemen is hugging the lady, another one is playing the lute, and the third one is giving a toast. The engraving is painted in bright colors, with prevailing red, pink, and blue ones. Monte Testaccio is a hill in Rome, which is located on the eastern bank of the River Tiber. It’s a place where ancient amphorae were accumulated. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, it was a place where young people held their banquets. Trastevere, Pinelli's family home, was located on the opposite bank of the River Tiber, that’s why one can see different views of Testaccio on his engravings.
In the lower right corner there is the author’s signature – Pinelli. In the center of the engraving under the image there is the work’s title Baccanale di Roma in Testaccio. There is a number "2" in the upper right corner above the image.