• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 11787

    Old Master & British Drawings

    5 July 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 11

    Bernardo Castello (Genoa 1557-1629)

    Perseus and Andromeda

    Price Realised  


    Bernardo Castello (Genoa 1557-1629)
    Perseus and Andromeda
    pen and brown ink, brown wash, heightened with white, squared in black chalk, on blue-green paper
    8 x 10 1/8 in. (20.2 x 25.8 cm.)

    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    The present drawing, which Mary Newcome Schleier has dated to the 1590s, depicts a relatively rare subject in Genoese art of the late 16th Century, that of Perseus and Andromeda. It has been suggested that Castello was inspired by Andrea Semino (1525-1595), who was his master, and who treated the subject in the Palazzo Doria, Genoa in the mid-1560s (R. Erbentraut, ‘Die Spinola-Fresken des Palazzo Pessagno Pallavicino und die Schlacht von Mühlberg’, Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte, 1990, no. 4, p. 555, fig. 19). While this drawing has been squared for transfer, it is not known to correspond to any surviving painting or fresco by the artist, although he, or a member of his studio, depicted a differently composed version of the same subject for the Palazzo Centurione, Genoa (F. Caraceni, Guide di Genova, No.80, Sampierdarena: Palazzo Centurione del Monastero, Genoa, 1979, p. 6, fig. 9). This drawing can be compared stylistically to a slightly smaller sheet depicting the Abduction of Orithyia by Boreas, datable around 1604-05 and now in the Musée des Beaux-Arts d’Orleans (Inv. 1500; E. Pagliano, op.cit., no. 157).


    Anonymous sale; New York, Sotheby’s, 20 January 1982, lot 56 (as Giovanni Battista Castello).
    with Mia Weiner, New York, 1984.
    with Stuart Denenberg, San Francisco, 1989.
    with Stephen Ongpin Fine Art, An exhibition of Master Drawings, New York, 2007, no. 7.


    E. Pagliano, Dessins italiens du musée des beaux-arts d’Orléans XVe-XVIIIe siècle: de Venise à Palerme, Paris, 2003, p. 264, under no. 157.


    New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Sixteenth-Century Italian Drawings in New York Collections, 1994, no. 44 (catalogue entry by W.M. Griswold).