G. Ravenet, Negros del monte de Manila
(Museo de América, Madrid)

Giovanni Ravenet (1766 - ca.1821) was a Parmenese draughtsman of French origin. The son of Gian Francesco, an engraver well-known in the Duchy of Parma, he studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti in that city and immediately showed a remarkable gift for portraiture. Along with his colleague Brambilla, he was added to the [Malaspina] Expedition at Acapulco in 1791. After returning to Spain, Ravenet was among those who accompanied Malaspina to Court, continuing to rework the sketches made during the trip. After the fall of his commanding officer, the artist fell into serious financial difficulties; despite this, from 1798 on, he was still able to work under the auspices of the Navy, although with a greatly reduced salary. Later, as the result of a Royal Decree against foreigners living in Madrid, he had to move to France; having once again returned to Spain, he ended his days in Madrid.
For more information, see:

C. SOTOS SERRANO, Los pintores de la Expedición de Alejandro Malaspina, Madrid, Real Academia de la Historia, 1982, 2 voll.; v. vol. I, pp. 85-95.

D. MANFREDI, "Un artista franco-parmense nella Spedizione Malaspina: Giovanni Ravenet," Archivio Storico per le January 3, 20060, pp. 385-405.

Image courtesy of the Centro di Studi Malaspiniani, Mulazzo, Italy.  Biographical and bibliographical notes by Dario Manfredi (Italian version), translated by John Black.


Updated: January 3, 2006