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
Luigi Conconi was an architect, painter and illustrator. Born in a Milanese middle-class family, he was the nephew of the painter Mauro Conconi. Luigi studied architecture at the Accademia di Brera and at the Politecnico in Milan, and he used his architectural training occasionally throughout his career. After attending the Politecnico, he became acquainted with the literary and artistic circles of the Scapigliatura: Tranquillo Cremona and Daniele Ranzoni influenced his early paintings. In the 1880s Conconi moved from the Realism of Scapigliatura toward Symbolism, developing an interest in visionary themes. He received international recognition from awards in Paris in 1900 and in Munich in 1913. Conconi was also a skilful and sensitive printmaker, who revived the art of the etching in Lombardy, being the leading exponent of the acquaforte monotipata, an etching printed leaving a surplus of ink on the plate to create evocative effects. Conconi printed personally almost all his own plates.