These splendid frescoes must once have decorated the walls of a Venetian villa, but as yet can not be linked to a known commission. They formed part of a group of oval frescoes of varying sizes depicting different allegories and muses, which can be dated to the early 1740s (Morassi, op. cit.; also see Christie’s New York, 22 May 1998, lots 104-106), when Tiepolo had just completed his first great ecclesiastical fresco cycle for I Gesuiti in Venice and was executing his magnificent ceiling fresco of the Chariot of the Sun for the Palazzo Clerici in Milan.
Firmly and briskly painted, they imitate remarkably the appearance of relief sculptures and would, undoubtedly, have served as overdoors in a large-scale decorative scheme. Although Morassi published this and the other frescoes as ‘painted in the main by Domenico [Tiepolo] and collaborators’, he revised his opinion after seeing the frescoes cleaned, and in a letter dated 15 January 1963 declared his belief that the entire group was by Giambattista.