Old Pilgrim


Pietro Bellotti ( Italian, 1627 - 1700 )

about 1670
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General Description

This figure of a man appears extraordinarily vivid as it emerges from a dark, plain background. His traveling cloak, walking stick, and weathered, dirty hands suggest he is a pilgrim. Bellotti is known for his meticulous hand in depicting the texture of wrinkled skin, coarse hair, and homespun cloth. He was deeply influenced by the gritty realism of Spanish painting and the dramatic lighting effects pioneered by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio in the early 17th century. Bellotti favored subjects such as paupers and pilgrims that gave him free rein to explore these qualities in paint.

Excerpt from

Julien Domercq, Label text (1987.4), 2020