Artist's Sisters Playing Chess and Their Governess
At about 11 years, Sofonisba's father sent her to study at the studio of Bernardino Campi, a respected portrait and religious painter of the Lombard school, also from Cremona, Sofonisba's home town. While she was still in her early twenties, Phillip II, made her court painter in Madrid. She held this post for 14 years.
When she returned to Italy in 1573, she married a Genoese ship captain, She had a long, happy marriage. When her husband died, his estate plus the generous pension from Philip II allowed her to paint freely and live comfortably up until she died, at age 95, in Palermo in 1625. She was internationally acclaimed and respected throughout her life.
Some links to her paintings: