Roberto Ferruzzi

Roberto Ferruzzi
A copy of the Madonnina
Born Roberto Ferruzzi
(1853-12-16)16 December 1853
Šibenik, Dalmatia
Died 16 February 1934(1934-02-16) (aged 80)
Venice, Italy
Nationality Italian
Notable work Madonnina

Roberto Ferruzzi (Italian: [roˈbɛrto ferˈruʦʦi]; 16 December 1853 16 February 1934)[1] was an Italian artist. He is best known for the painting Madonnina[2] that won the second Venice Biennale in 1897.


Roberto Ferruzzi was born in Šibenik, in Dalmatia, in 1853 to Italian parents. At four he moved to Venice with his family. After the death of his father, a lawyer, he came back to Dalmatia and to study classics. In 1868, he returned to Venice to enroll in the Liceo Marco Foscarini. He subsequently entered the University of Padua, and graduated with a law degree. However instead of practicing law, he gained vocation as a self-taught painter.[3]

Afterwards, he moved to Luvigliano, a frazione of Torreglia, where he painted Madonnina in 1897.[4]

In 1883 at Turin, he first exhibited, mostly figure paintings. In 1887, he exhibited at Venice a canvas titled La prima penitenza, depicting a genre subject, of a boy praying a rosary in penance for some bad behavior, while his grandmother looks on amused. In 1891-1892 at the Palermo exposition his genre painting Hush! won an award. In 1897 at Venice, he exhibited the Madonnina and Toward the Light.[5]

Ferruzzi died on 16 February 1934 in Venice and was buried in the small cemetery of Luvigliano in his family's plot, near his wife Ester Sorgato and his daughter Mariska.

Two descendants had his name: the son Roberto (nicknamed Bobo), a painter of lagoons, and the grandson Roberto (nicknamed Robi), an art appraiser and antiquarian.


  1. IL DALMATA, ottobre 2008, PDF
  2. Madonna of the Streets
  3. La Biennale di Venezia, Volume 2, by Esposizione (2 : 1897) page 109-110.
  4. "Madonnina del Ferruzzi" (in Italian). Retrieved 17 December 2014.
  5. History of Modern Italian Art, by Ashton Rollins Willard (1902), page 644-645.


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