Constantino Brumidi

born Rome, Italy 1805-died Washington, DC 1880
Rome, Italy
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
  • American

Born July 26, 1805, in Rome, Italy. His father was Greek and his mother was Italian. Studied painting with Baron Camuccini and sculpture with Antonio Canova and Bertel Thorvaldsen at the Academy in Rome, about 1818. Decorated the villa and palace of Prince Torlonia; St. Paul's; and the Loggia di Raffaello in the Vatican, for Pope Pius IX. Imprisoned fourteen months during the French occupation of Rome, 1848–52, then exiled. Immigrated to New York, 1852. During the years 1852–54, painted altarpieces for St. Stephens in New York; the Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul in Philadelphia; and the Cathedral at Mexico City. Settled in Washington, D.C., 1854. Hired by Captain Montgomery C. Meigs as chief fresco painter of the Capitol, 1854. Naturalized, 1857. Slipped from scaffolding while painting the frieze in the Rotunda, 1879. Died February 19, 1880, in Washington, D.C. His son, Laurence Brumidi, was a Washington artist also.

Andrew J. Cosentino and Henry H. Glassie The Capital Image: Painters in Washington, 1800–1915 (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press for the National Museum of American Art, 1983)