Dimensions: 23,5 x 15,5 cm
Lodovico Cardi was born at Villa Castelvecchio in Cigoli, Tuscany, whence the name by which he is commonly known. Initially, Cigoli trained in Florence under the fervid mannerist Alessandro Allori, and studied the works of Michelangelo, Correggio, Andrea del Sarto and Pontormo. Later, influenced by the most prominent of the "Counter-Maniera" painters, Santi di Tito, as well as by Barocci, Cigoli shed the shackles of mannerism and infused his later paintings with an expressionism often lacking from 16th-century Florentine painting.
For the Roman patron, Massimo Massimi, he painted an Ecce Homo (now in Palazzo Pitti). Supposedly unbeknownst to any of the painters, two other prominent contemporary painters, Passignano and Caravaggio, had been requested canvases on the same theme. This work was afterwards taken by Napoleon to the Louvre, and was restored to Florence in 1815.
One of his early paintings was of Cain slaying Abel. He then gained the employ of the Grand-Duke in some works for the Pitti Palace, where he painted a Venus and Satyr and a Sacrifice of Isaac.
Other important pictures are St. Peter Healing the Lame Man in St Peter's; an unfinished Burial of St. Paul in the church of San Paolo fuori le Mura, and a Story of Psyche in a fresco incorporated in the decorative scheme of the Villa Borghese; a Martyrdom of Stephen, which earned him the name of the "Florentine Correggio", and a Stigmata of St. Francis at Florence. Shortly before his death, Cigoli was made a Knight of Malta at the request of Pope Paul