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Natale Carta

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Natale Carta

( Messina 1790 - 1884   )


    Natale Carta

    Sicilian painter, born in Messina. He made his first art studies in his native city, then in Palermo. After moving to Naples, he was lucky enough to get acquainted with the princess of Paternò who, very fond of fine arts as she was, and finding in the young man from Messina a great disposition for painting, took to protecting his career, and awarded him a pension for seven years.

    Thanks to that pension, Carta was able to move to Rome, where he began to study drawing and the nude and began his first exercises with the brush. His teacher, and illustrious teacher, was Camuccini. One of his first paintings was the “Santa Rosalia”, which can be found in the church of Santa Maria d’Istria in Rome.

    After the “Santa Rosalia”, which gave the young painter very encouraging praise, he painted (removing the subject from Chateaubriand’s novel) two pictures: “Atala receiving extreme unction from her father Aubry” and “Atala brought to the sepulcher”.

    These two paintings, exhibited in Naples, had full success and they also had the fate of being bought at a good price by King Francesco I, who had them placed in the picture gallery of Capo di Monte, where they are nevertheless.

    Francesco I also gave the Charter the knight’s cross not only, but also ordered him two paintings of sacred subject: “The ecstasy of the blessed Nicolò de ‘Longobardi” and a “San Francesco di Paola”, paintings that the Carta painted and which, though somewhat poor in color, were praised for their happy composition and correct design.

    By order of the Queen of Sardinia, he painted a picture whose subject was: “Edoardo di Savoia who, at the instant that the Viennese attack his castle, inflamed with a fierce ardor of resistance, encourages his officers to fight by pointing they, as a talisman of glory, the coat of arms of Savoy “.

    This painting also contributed to the fame of the artist, who from then on had numerous commissions, so much so that the list of his paintings would be too long, that the artist himself has lost his memory of many.

    Of the works he did after “Edoardo di Savoia”, we will mention only the main ones. For Prince Alessandro Torlonia, he frescoed a room in the palace in Piazza Venezia, the so-called “Hall of illustrious women”. For the villa of the same prince, he painted the “Three Graces”, surrounded by cupids.

    For the vault of the hall of the palace of Duke Marino Torlonia in Porta Pia, he developed, with mastery of composition, a mythological subject: “Mentor and Telemachus received by the diva Calypso”.

    For the church of San Paolo fuori le mura he carried out two large frescoes, one is the “Miracle of San Paolo”; the other represents the same “Saint Paul in the act that declares himself a Roman citizen”.

    The “Madonna del Miracolo”, existing in the church of Sant’Andrea delle Fratte, is his work. Portraits made a quantity and of every dimension. Among the big shots who posed at the stand of the Carta contasi “Francesco II of Naples”. He is an honorary member of many academies. Besides the Cross of Francis I, he is also awarded the Tuscan and papal knights of Santo Stefano and San Gregorio.


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