Elisabetta Sirani was an impressively prolific and successful painter, despite her gender, in Baroque Italy’s mid-17th century. Wealthy patrons and consistent commissions allowed her to support her 6-person family. She was so quick at painting naturalistic and poignant canvases that people visited her studio just to watch her work. Along with tutoring both male and female painters, she established an academy specifically for female artists in Northern Italy—a very progressive institution for the Baroque era. Sirani died when she was 27 of unresolved causes, but managed to paint over 200 completed works in her lifetime.
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