Francesco Primaticcio

Renaissance Artist / Architect / Sculptor


Francesco Primaticcio was born in Bologna, Italy on April 30th, 1504. He spent a good amount of his life in France to work at the Chateau Fontainebleau. Primaticcio's earlier training was from Giulio Romano at the Palazzo del Te, Mantua, from 1526 to 1532. There, Primaticcio developed his unique style that got him noticed at Fontainebleau. Francesco Primaticcio dedicated much of his life to Fontainebleau with everything from paintings, sculptures, and even architectural designs (later in his life). He did paintings such as Ulysses and the Sirens, Ulysses and Penelope, and Juno Rousing Zeus from Slumber. On top of that, Primaticcio also did sculptures such as Double Head. Primaticcio was always learning his whole life, always acquiring knowledge and getting new teachers. He is a perfect example of humanism, as he always gained more knowledge about the world.

Ulysses and the Sirens

Ulysses and the Sirens was created sometime in the 1540's by Francesco Primaticcio. Although this original piece can not be found in a museum today, some of his art can still be found in art museums and exhibits. This piece is significant because it is a painting of an Ancient Greek/Roman myth, when Odysseus (or Ulysses) went past the Sirens on his ship. The Sirens were creatures who lured in their prey with majestic singing, bringing passing ships to their death. I found this piece interesting because it has so many details and aspects to it. For example, you can see Odysseus' men tying him to the ship so that he can listen to their singing without chance of being lured out to his death. You can also see graves, signifying the deaths of other sailors, as well as more sailors coming in from another side.


"Francesco Primaticcio." International Dictionary of Architects and Architecture. Gale, 1993. Biography in Context. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.

"Juno Rousing Zeus from Slubmer" Gabinetto disegni e stampe degli Uffizi

The Art Institute of Chicago, Leonora Hall Gurley Memorial Collection.

Chicago, Illinois, USA


The Art Institute of Chicago, The Leonora Hall Gurley Memorial Collection

Chicago, Illinois, USA


"Ulysseus and the Sirens" Private Collection, Paris, France