Born in Molfetta, near Bari, Giaquinto trained in Naples and was influenced by the work of Neapolitan painters Luca Giordano and Francesco Solimena. In 1727 he left Naples for Rome, where his style became increasingly classicising. Once his reputation was established, Giaquinto was invited twice to the Savoy court in Turin (in 1733 and 1735–9). In 1740 he became a member of the Academy of Saint Luke in Rome and, having set up a studio, he undertook a number of large decorative schemes. In 1753 Giaquinto was summoned by the king of Spain, Ferdinand VI, to Madrid where he succeeded Jacopo Amigoni (1680/2–1752) as court painter. Giaquinto’s most significant commission in Madrid was the fresco decoration of the recently-built Royal Palace. In 1762, after nine years at the Spanish court, Giaquinto moved back to Naples where he continued working for the Spanish monarchy until his death.