Francesco Vinea

Francesco Vinea. A painter who followed his true passion

Francesco Vinea was born in 1845 in Forlì.

Difficult beginnings

As a child, he moved to Florence with his family and took painting courses at the Academy of Fine Arts starting in 1859 but economic difficulties stopped him from continuing his studies. He moved to Milan, worked for a photographer, and drew for illustrated newspapers.

The Academy of Fine Arts in Florence

With the little earnings he made, he returned to Florence and enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence. He started to take the lessons from professor Enrico Pollastrini (1817–1876). Without any influence from his past studies in the academy, he immediately showed extraordinary skill for genre and costume paintings (from the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries).

He executed them with graceful colors and his paintings were in accord with public tastes.

He also painted female nudes, love scenes, and interiors influenced by the Macchiaiolo artists, landscapes, seascapes, and rustic themes. His works are in the Gallery of Modern Art in Milan.

His first paintings Interni [Interiors] were a success. Shopkeepers from Paris and London competed with each other to give young Francesco new commissions.

Vinea became wealthy

He became wealthy and spent much of his fortune on tapestries, carpets, precious leathers, musical instruments, furniture, weapons, and bronzes. His studio on Viale Principe Eugenio in Florence seemed like an Asian museum. 

His paintings went on to become part of collections and museums throughout Europe. Some of the most noteworthy works are Dopo il bagno, [After the Bath] shown in Munich in 1979, which won the gold medal; Autoritratto [Self-portrait] at the Uffizi in Florence, and Prima del duello [Before the Duel] at the Gallery of Modern Art of Milan. Vinea died in 1902 in Florence.

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