Italian Sch. 17thc - Nativity Scene Attr. Pietro Da Cortona - Baroque Altarpiece
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Italian Sch. 17thc - Nativity Scene Attr. Pietro Da Cortona - Baroque Altarpiece:
Very recently, we acquired a major part of a private collection in Ghent (Belgium). The drawings were bought between 1970 and 1984, mainly in Paris and Belgium (the owner left notes on mainly all backsides fo the framingboards). We took all of them out of the frames (to assure further conservation).
The drawings remained part of the collection till May 2013 and never appeared back on the market since their purchase.For sale is this spectacular doublesided drawing, executed in pen, ink and grey wash on laid watermarked paper. The drawing depicts a Nativity scene. The Madonna is covering her new born child. Joseph is watching it, seated left from the crib. Villagers are approaching from the backside to see the Messias. Angels are protecting the crib with clouds. The ox can be noticed right.
The artist placed the scene in a classic Environment. This drawing must have been a study for a larger scale project, most likely an altarpiece.
The backside of the sheet shows a variety of studies in red chalk, possibly slightly earlier than the Nativity drawing. We can notice a study of a male nude and a fabulous study of an angel at the rightside bottom. We think, the artist re-used this studysheet for his preparatory drawing for the Nativity scene. This opinion can be defended by looking at the size of the sheet. The backside shows a sheet which was cut down in size to let it fit for the Nativty scene, to be made on the other side.
The backside bares a note, refering to a 17th century Academy (?).Frontside top right : a number "XV" (possibly, this drawing was part of a larger series of drawings, depicting the life of Jesus).Authorship : the drawing is from the Italian-Roman school, attributed to Pietro da Cortona (see also note on supporting sheet).PIETRO DA CORTONA (Cortona 1596 - Rome 1669) : Italian painter, architect, and decorator. Son of a stonemason, who was apprenticed to a painter in Florence. His first major work (a series of frescoes in the small church of Santa Bibiana in Rome), was commissioned by Pope Urban VIII. After this commission, the patronage of the pope's family, the Barberinis, advanced Pietro's career. The rich exuberance of those Baroque frescoes was a prelude to his best-known work, the large ceiling fresco in the Barberini Palace. Here he demonstrated his mastery of illusion, for the centre of the vault appears open to the sky and the figures seem to hover in space. He provided a series of frescoes for the Pitti Palace in Florence. Also a master architect, his greatest architectural accomplishment is the church of Santi Martina e Luca in Rome (1634), the first Baroque church built as a unitary whole.
Size : 34,7x26cm.Condition : Good. Attached to a supporting sheet by the right corners. Mid vertical : minor traces of folding. Top- and bottomzone : minor traces of wrinkling. Unframed.Shipping : flat shippingrate 19$. Shipped as International Registered Mail (with trackingn°). Combined shipping available.