Damià Campeny

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(Mataró, 1771 – Barcelona, 1855)

Damià Campeny i Estrany is considered, along with Antoni Solà and José Álvarez Cubero, to be the leading figure in Spanish and European Neoclassical sculpture. The artist’s most important works form part of the collection of sculptures of the Llotja: some still embellish the halls of the building while others are conserved by the Sant Jordi Royal Academy of Fine Arts, the successor of the School of Fine Arts, in its premises on the second floor.
Damià Campeny was born in Mataró in 1771. At the age of eight he was recommended to the sculptor Salvador Gurri, in whose workshop he remained for four years before moving to that of Nicolau Traver. While working and studying with these masters, the young sculptor was completing his training at the School of Fine Arts.

In 1795 he received a grant from the Board of Trade to further his studies in Rome, a city that continued to maintain its pre-eminence in the sphere of the arts, particularly in sculpture. In Rome, Campeny evolved from the late Baroque style towards the Neoclassicism then dominant in Europe.

By 1808 Damià Campeny had completed his training and was a prestigious sculptor who wanted to return to Barcelona, but he was halted by the Napoleonic invasion of the Iberian Peninsula. Finally, Campeny and the works he had created in Italy disembarked in Barcelona in 1816.

Damià Campeny was appointed as a teacher at the Llotja’s School of Fine Arts. His activity provided a great stimulus for the city’s artistic panorama. The Neoclassical principles became consolidated, but Campeny received few commissions through which to display his talent.

In April 1840, the Board of Trade offered him the direction of the School of Fine Arts, but he declined the post: poor health forced him to relinquish the position he had applied for in earlier times and been refused. Damià Campeny died in 1855 at the age of 84.

Author's works
at the Llotja de Mar

  • Lucretia

  • Hymen

  • Love

  • Diana the Huntress

  • Paris

  • Janua caeli

  • Vases

  • Lions

  • Mastiff

  • Other Authors

    Other Authors