Léonard Thiry

(d. 1536)

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(fl Fontainebleau, 1536; d Antwerp, 1550). Flemish painter and draughtsman, active in France and the southern Netherlands. He worked as Rosso fiorentino's assistant in the Galerie François I at the château of Fontainebleau, and later under Francesco Primaticcio. It is impossible to identify his contribution to the paintings in the gallery, but he was active as a designer of prints in the 1540s. The Livre de la conqueste de la toison d'or engraved by René Boyvin (not published until 1563) is his most important work, but two sets of prints with twelve sheets each, etched by Léon Davent, are more interesting because the style is less strictly dependent on Rosso. One set represents the Story of Calypso, the other the Loves of Pluto and Proserpina, but the figures are small-scale, and the main interest is in the landscapes. Thiry's name also appears on the title sheet of a series of imaginary Roman ruins published by Jacques Androuet Du Cerceau I (see Du cerceau, (1)) in 1550. Other sets of prints, such as the beautiful anonymous series of vases engraved in the workshop of pierre Milan and rené Boyvin, were almost certainly designed by Thiry, rather than Rosso, to whom they have formerly been attributed. Several drawings have been ascribed to him, the best of which is a Christ Carrying the Cross (London, BM), also previously attributed to Rosso. Thiry's work shows him to have been a close follower of the Florentine artist, but his figures are a little more squat. As a designer of ornament, he was inventive but his inventions tend to be somewhat monotonous. In the 1540s he worked as a tapestry designer in Brussels.

From The Grove Encyclopedia of Northern Renaissance Art in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Renaissance Art.

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