Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo(1727 -1804), son of the greatGiambattista Tiepolowho worked throughout Europe and led the his family with him. This is why Giandomenico and his brother Lorenzo began to collaborate with him from a young age and to learn all the secrets of the art of late-baroque painting.
The minuet of Giandomenico Tiepolo
Something that is perfectly shown in this painting that he made around the year 1750 and that today is kept in theNational Art Museum of CataloniaenBarcelona. A painting that shows us one of the most traditional festivals, Carnival, and above all a dance that became very popular in the 18th century, the minuet.
In this case, to set the stage for the performance Tiépolo son was inspired by one of the plays by the Italian playwright Carlo Goldoni. An author who collected the traditional characters of the famous Comedia dell’Arte. There appeared the Harlequin, Columbina, Pantaleón or Pulchinela. Which in turn are also as common in Venetian carnivals as masks.
The scene is set in a most rococo space, such as the gardens of a luxurious villa. However, in that garden there is an element that tells us about Giandomenico Tiepolo's tastes. And it is that it places a sculpture of classic airs on the whole scene. Something that can be understood as an allusion to histaste for the more contained artistic forms of Antiquity, towards greater harmony, since this painter is considered a wonderful link between the ornate rococo art and the more sedate and balanced that the incipient neoclassical art will bring.
Nevertheless, in terms of genre it is purely rococo. It is a gallant scene, in this case of the high society of Venice, which on many occasions hid the decadence of their city, with the celebration of this type of festivities. So it would be a costumbrista scene, much to the taste of the art buyers of that time. After all, it brought together many of the elements that this dilettante aristocracy liked. A party, costumes, a garden, music, theater, and also a fashionable dance, such as the minuet, which appears in other works by this painter and other contemporaries.
By the way, a dance like so many other things from the late-baroque and rococo culture came from France, from which artistic elements and other dances such as the rigodon, or the chaconne, which flooded the customs and festivities of almost all European courts.