A pupil of Jusepe de Ribera, from whom he inherited a predilection for Caravaggesque contrasts of light and shadow, Giordano moved to Rome at the age of about twenty and came into contact with the classicism of Pietro da Cortona and the Neo-Venetian style. After a stay in Emilia, he then moved to Venice, where he produced teleri – large detachable wall-paintings on canvas – with evident references to 16th-century Venetian painting, for the church of Santa Maria della Salute (1667). Having returned to his hometown, he painted frescoes for various churches, including Santa Brigida, San Gregorio Armeno (1678–79) and Sant’Agostino degli Scalzi. His technical skill and the ability to complete complex commissions in a short space of time – hence the nickname “Luca Fapresto” – won him a solid reputation and he worked on the frescoes in the gallery of the Palazzo Medici-Riccardi in Florence between 1682 and 1686. His career reached its peak in 1692, when he was summoned to the Spanish court in Madrid, where he stayed for a decade and produced numerous works for the official residences of the Bourbon family. Having returned definitively to Naples, he was commissioned to decorate the Treasure Chapel in the Carthusian monastery of San Martino (1704). Moving beyond 17th-century Naturalism towards greater freedom and fluidity, Luca Giordano’s painting paves the way for the great decorative work of the 18th century.