Girolamo GENGA

Urbino c.1476 - Urbino 1551


A painter and architect, Girolamo Genga was, according to Giorgio Vasari, a pupil and assistant of Luca Signorelli, working with him at Monteoliveto Maggiore, the Cappella Nova in the Duomo at Orvieto, the Palazzo Petrucci in Siena, and elsewhere between 1499 and c.1511. He also spent a few years in the studio of Pietro Perugino, where he met and came under the influence of Raphael, a fellow student in Perugino’s workshop. Although he spent some years in Florence and Siena, Genga worked mostly in Umbria. In the early years of his career he often collaborated with the artist Timoteo Viti in Urbino, frescoing scenes from the life of Saint Martin for the Arrivabene chapel in the Duomo, commissioned in 1504, as well as providing temporary decorations for the funeral of Duke Guidobaldo I da Montefeltro in 1508 and the entrance of Leonora Gonzaga into Urbino in 1509. He also painted two frescoes for the Palazzo Petrucci in Siena, working alongside Signorelli and Pinturicchio. In September 1513 Genga received the commission for one of his most important surviving works, the altarpiece of the Dispute over the Immaculate Conception, painted for the church of Sant’Agostino in Cesena between 1516 and 1518 and installed there in 1520; the painting is now in the Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan. In 1518 Genga again worked with Viti on a fresco cycle for San Francesco Grande in Forlì, but by 1519 he was in Rome, where he painted an altarpiece of the Resurrection for the Oratory of Santa Caterina da Siena, commissioned by members of the Chigi family. Summoned back to Urbino in 1522 by Duke Francesco Maria I della Rovere, who appointed him court architect and artist, Genga was given the task of restoring, enlarging and decorating the Villa Imperiale at Pesaro. The remainder of his career was spent mainly in Urbino and Pesaro, working on architectural and artistic projects for Francesco Maria della Rovere and his successor, Guidobaldo II. For the latter he designed the church of San Giovanni Battista in Pesaro, begun in 1543 but finished after Genga’s death by his son Bartolomeo.

Artworks by this artist