From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913
Was a native of Bologna, in Italy. He probably came to Ireland as a scene-painter, as about 1772 he was employed by Thomas Ryder at the Smock Alley Theatre. In 1777 he was living in South King Street, and sent six works to the Society of Artists in William Street: "St. Austin," "St. Thomas of Villa-Nova," "Ruins in Perspective," "A Night Scene," "Children and Fruit, in distemper," and a "Design of a Cabinet or Passage to a Ball-room." In 1779 he accompanied Gabriel Beranger (q.v.) in his tour in Connaught, assisting in the work of making drawings of ancient buildings and antiquities. Of this tour Beranger has left a manuscript account wherein he frequently mentions Bigari, whom he found a useful colleague and a genial companion. At that time Bigari only spoke French and Italian. He does not appear to have accompanied Beranger in any subsequent tours, and nothing more is heard of him, so that he probably left Ireland.
Drawings made by him in Connaught and elsewhere were engraved for Grose's "Antiquities of Ireland." These are, "Christ Church, Dublin," "Tallaght Church," "Abbey of Dromahair," "Morrisk Abbey," "Ballintubber Abbey," "Rosserick Monastery," "Abbey of Burrishoole," "Turlogh Round Tower," "Interior of Court Abbey," "Interior of Sligo Abbey," "Interior of Ballinadown Abbey," "Church on Church Island, County Sligo," "Rosslee Castle," "Athenry Abbey," "Dunmore Abbey," "Claddagh Castle," "Kilconnel Abbey," "Birmingham Castle, Athenry," "Kilcooley Abbey," "Interior of Boyle Abbey," "Ennismacreeny Church," "Abbey of Multyfarnham," "Knockmoy Abbey," "Tristernagh Abbey," two views, "Roscommon Abbey," "Strade Abbey," "Ballymote Church," "Cong Abbey," "St. John's Castle, County Roscommon," "O'Rourke's Hall, Dromahaire," "Ballinsnave Castle," "Newark Castle, County Down." The original water-colour drawings of some of these are in the Royal Irish Academy, and a drawing of the Castle of Enniskillen is in Beranger's collection of drawings, also in the Academy.
Charlotte Milligan Fox, sister of the poet Alice Milligan, was a founding member of the Irish Folk Song Society and an indefatigable field collector of Irish traditional music. Her singularly important work on Irish haprers is here presented for the twenty-first century reader. This edition of Annals offers a much greater number of illustrations than were included in the original 1911 publication, a full biographical introduction, an extensive bibliography of the writings of Milligan Fox and an appendix discussing the variant texts of Arthur O’Neills Memoirs.
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