Watercolour, c. 1888; signed LConconi; 307 x 575 mm.
The subject is certainly connected with the series of paintings which Conconi called Tales and Legends, which was intended to compose a polyptych of six paintings. The most famous of them is I Novellieri, recently sold at Sotheby's, Milan. The theme of the reading of the Decameron during the ten days was one of the favorites by the Scapigliatura. See R. Giolli, Luigi Conconi. Architetto e Pittore, Rome and Milan, 1920, pages 54,55, 64-65.
Sotheby's, sale catalogue MI0314, 14 June, 2011, lot. 94
Conconi studied architecture at the Accademia di Brera and the Politecnico di Milano. He came into contact with members of the literary and artistic circles of the Scapigliatura – the Italian equivalent of the French Bohème– notably Tranquillo Cremona and Daniele Ranzoni, both of whom influenced his early paintings. In the 1880s Conconi moved from the Realism of Scapigliatura toward Symbolism. The awards he received in Paris in 1900 and Munich in 1913 led to his international recognition.
Conconi, who personally saw to the production of virtually all his plates, was the leading exponent in Lombardy of Acquaforte monotipata. This technique involved the artist drawing directly onto the ink covering the plate, prior to pulling the impression. In this way each resultant print has different characteristics.