Airbrush Painting of “Estasi della beata Ludovica Albertoni by G. L. Bernini

Introduction from Wikipedia

Estasi Beata Ludovica Albertoni di G. L. Bernini - Acrilico e carboncino su carta - 70x50 cm - 2015 - Collezione Privata Roma
Estasi Beata Ludovica Albertoni di G. L. Bernini – Acrilico e carboncino su carta – 70×50 cm – 2015 – Collezione Privata Roma

The Blessed Ludovica Albertoni is an artwork of Gian Lorenzo Bernini of 1674, kept in the church of San Francesco a Ripa in Rome.


Ludovica Albertoni, tertiary Franciscan  lived in Rome from 1474 to 1533, was beatified in 1671, also for the experience of mystical visions, transcendent dimension re-evaluated and encouraged by the Roman church in the seventeenth century. In the same year, the Altieri family decided to dedicate an altar in the chapel in San Francesco: the work was entrusted to the now septuagenarian Bernini.

Description and style

Located precisely in the chapel Altieri, this work deals with simpler forms and sober theme ecstasy Christian, already touched Ecstasy of St. Teresa of Avila of 1652. It expresses the most incisive religious aspect of the latest productions Bernini; the figure of the Blessed is stretched out on a bed finely embroidered in marble, which is placed in an unconventional manner on the altar of the chapel.

The space of the chapel is very small, but Bernini still managed to create a spectacular effect which had already experienced in the Cornaro Chapel. Creates two very inclined walls that act as a backdrop to the space where you entered the sarcophagus of the blessed. The back wall is set back, so Bernini can hide two small vertical windows which open directly outside, creating a grazing light that illuminates the white statue, making it more visible in the dim light of the chapel. Entering through the main aisle, the chapel all occurs in a sudden, in a dense twilight broken only by a ray of light from a window hidden; Blessed is ideally high due to narrow shape of the architectural composition.

A painting by Giovanni Battista Gaulli backdrop to the statue of Ludovica Albertoni, purposely designed for the two works were in stark contrast: besides the obvious difference of materials, the white marble and the darker colors of the painting, there is a strong discrepancy between the ‘convulsive agitation of the reclining figure and delicate vision of paradise behind him, painting was almost the same vision of the blessed.

font. Wikipedia

After this introduction to Wikipedia, I describe my approach to work.


Estasi della Beata Ludovica Albertoni-Giampiero Abate My research playback born, like my usual, not to limit the technical hyperrealistic end in itself, but merging various instruments and artistic techniques.
The paper to start: a sheet of acid-free cotton, not discolored and rough, more suitable for the watercolor to other techniques.
The picture I have drawn with a pencil already trying to bring every detail. Already by this stage I started to appreciate the splendor of the sculpture.

First I went to draw the bed of the Blessed with a series of pencil of varying softness, after which I colored with watercolor.
For the figure, however, I chose a sepia tone to have a spreading “monochrome” with the reflections (or highlights) whites.
In the final, the bottom with charcoal to give more depth, but first I gave him a draft of blue watercolor.

This way I could get a proper tonal balance between the figure and the bottom.


I liked the sculpture before studying the photos and information on the Internet. Often, being right in the city world of art, I did not realize that we have everything here in Rome. I went to see her in person.

An incredible feeling to see it a few feet away, recognizing every single fold and nuance. Execution, that of Bernini, exceptional, placed in a small chapel, almost insignificant, but enhanced by this masterpiece. The light that filters from the left that floods the sculpture from the head to be distributed along the body, like a celestial light.

My work is also available in print in a limited edition of 30 copies in print on paper Gilcée Hanmenhule Fine Art William Turner 310 gr. A3 +, numbered and signed in original, with certification of authenticity.