1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Ferri, Ciro

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FERRI, CIRO (1634–1689), Roman painter, the chief disciple and successor of Pietro da Cortona. He was born in the Roman territory, studied under Pietro, to whom he became warmly attached, and, at an age a little past thirty, completed the painting of the ceilings and other internal decorations begun by his instructor in the Pitti palace, Florence. He also co-operated in or finished several other works by Pietro, both in Florence and in Rome, approaching near to his style and his particular merits, but with less grace of design and native vigour, and in especial falling short of him in colour. Of his own independent productions, the chief is an extensive series of scriptural frescoes in the church of S. Maria Maggiore in Bergamo; also a painting (rated as Ferri’s best work) of St Ambrose healing a sick person, the principal altarpiece in the church of S. Ambrogio della Massima in Rome. The paintings of the cupola of S. Agnese in the same capital might rank even higher than these; but this labour remained uncompleted at the death of Ferri, and was marred by the performances of his successor Corbellini. He executed also a large amount of miscellaneous designs, such as etchings and frontispieces for books; and he was an architect besides. Ferri was appointed to direct the Florentine students in Rome, and Gabbiani was one of his leading pupils. As regards style, Ferri ranks as chief of the so-called Machinists, as opposed to the school founded by Sacchi, and continued by Carlo Maratta. He died in Rome—his end being hastened, as it is said, by mortification at his recognized inferiority to Bacciccia in colour.