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Alexander the Great taming Bucephalus

Francesco Primaticcio1541/1544

Château de Fontainebleau
Château de Fontainebleau

Francesco Primaticcio, the second Italian master to have been summoned to work at Fontainebleau, hailed from Bologna. Between 1541 and 1544 he designed and carried out the decoration of the bedchamber of the Duchess of Etampes, François I’s favourite. Following the ornamental style of the François I Gallery, the walls are adorned with stucco frames and frescoes to form a cycle beneath the ceiling cornice. It tells the story of the amorous hero Alexander the Great, making allusion to the relationship between the French King and his favourite. The large elongated female figures are typical of the Mannerist ornamental style, as are the leather strapwork, the garlands of fruits, satyrs and cherubs.

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