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date: 14 December 2019

Barbieri, Giovan Domenicolocked

  • Mercedes Viale Ferrero


(b ?Parma, c1674; dc1740). Italian stage designer. A pupil of Ferdinando Galli-Bibiena, he was active as a painter of perspective scenery in many theatres of northern Italy: the Teatro Malvezzi, Bologna, Teatro Regio, Turin, Teatro di S Agostino, Genoa and the Teatro Omodeo, Pavia. In Milan he worked sporadically from 1709 (Gasparini’s Amor generoso at the Teatro delle Commedie) and then continuously from 1722 to 1736, mostly at the Regio Ducal Teatro where his productions included Gasparini’s Flavio Anicio Olibrio (1722) and Broschi’s Adriano in Siria (1736). His usual collaborator as decorator and figure painter was another of Galli-Bibiena’s pupils, Giovan Battista Medici (who in librettos of 1737–42 is named alone or with Fabrizio Galliari). Barbieri was also a theatre architect and designed the interior of the Regio Ducal, inaugurated on 26 December 1717 and destroyed by fire in 1776. Its appearance is known from an autograph drawing (Milan, Civica Raccolta delle stampe A. Bertarelli) and two engravings (reproduced by Latuada; see illustration): the auditorium was U-shaped, with Eve tiers each of 36 boxes. There is no reliable pictorial evidence for Barbieri’s long career as a stage designer....

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