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    Sale 7605

    Old Master and 19th Century Drawings

    8 July 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 21

    Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, Il Guercino (Cento 1591-1666 Bologna)

    A bearded man, half-length, wearing a hat, and a young woman

    Price Realised  

    Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, Il Guercino (Cento 1591-1666 Bologna)
    A bearded man, half-length, wearing a hat, and a young woman
    pen and brown ink, brown wash
    5 3/8 x 7½ in. (136 x 191 mm.)


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    In 1619 Oliviero Gatti (fl. 1596-1626) published a pattern book after drawings by Guercino (see N. Turner, Drawings from Windsor Castle, exhib. cat., Fort Worth, Washington and New York, 1992, no. 8). This manual was intended for instructing the beginner in drawing through 22 plates of anatomical and character studies. The present sheet belongs to the latter group, and is engraved in reverse as plate 20 of the series.
    The delicate penmanship corresponds in style with that of the few other known preparatory drawings by Guercino for this set of prints. For the frontispiece Guercino drew an Allegory of Painting representing the coat-of-arms of the Duke of Mantua, Ferdinando Gonzaga, to whom the manual was dedicated (Windsor Castle, inv. no. 2730; N. Turner, op. cit., no. 8). The original drawings by Guercino belonged to Padre Antonio Mirandola, the young artist's patron and friend, and later to Padre Pietro Martire Pederzani who took them to Venice, accompanied by Guercino, where they were shown to Palma Giovane.
    The tradition of pattern books developed initially in Holland at the end of the 16th Century; Guercino's collaboration with Gatti produced one of the first examples of Italian pattern books.
    We are grateful to Nicholas Turner for confirming the attribution and for his help in cataloguing this drawing.

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    Provenance

    Padre Antonio Mirandola (?).
    Padre Pietro Martire Pederzani (?).