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Giovanni da Cavino

Paduan, 1500 - 1570

Cavino, Giovanni dal; Cavino, Giovanni

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Cavino was the son of goldsmith Bartolommeo di Giovanni [d. 1517] of San Giorgio delle Pertiche in Cavino d'Arsego, from which the name Cavino derives. Bartolommeo was probably his son's first master; Cavino's brother Battista [d. 1561] was also a goldsmith. Cavino married Romana da Trento in 1517; her father was a goldsmith as well. According to Cavino's will, dated 16 May 1570, there were two sons, Camillo, who received his laureate in jurisprudence from the University of Padua, and Giandomenico, who followed his father in his career and predeceased him. Cavino is closely associated with Paduan sculptor Andrea Ricco [1470-1532], with whom he may have trained following his father's death. Riccio's sepulchral monument included a bronze portrait tondo, lost by the eighteen century, which Cavino is assumed to have made. Cavino's first documented works were two silver candlesticks, now lost, made c. 1527-1529 for the Duomo in Padua. He has only three known signed works in an oeuvre of over one hundred medals. A large number of steel dies, from which Cavino's medals were struck, survive. Cavino is well known for his medals of ancient subjects, the intentions for which have been debated. While he has been vilified as a forger, evidence of his character and the manner in which antique coins were appreciated in the Renaissance tend to exonerate him. Cavino was buried per his will in the church od San Giovanni di Verdara in Padua. His tomb was later moved to the novitiate cloister in the Santo, not far from Riccio's monument. [Compiled from sources and references recorded on CMS]

Artist Bibliography

Scher, Stephen K., ed. The Currency of Fame: Portrait Medals of the Renaissance, exh. cat., National Gallery of Art, Washington; The Frick Collection, New York, 1994: 182-183.

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