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    Sale 11936

    Old Masters: Part II

    14 April 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 232

    Giambattista Tiepolo (Venice 1696-1770 Madrid)

    An Allegorical Female Figure; and An Allegory of Music

    Price Realised  


    Giambattista Tiepolo (Venice 1696-1770 Madrid)
    An Allegorical Female Figure; and An Allegory of Music
    detached gilded fresco, laid down on canvas, oval
    each approximately 29½ x 21½ in. (75 x 54.6 cm.)
    (2)a pair

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    These elegant allegories, executed in a monochromatic palette in a trompe l'oeil style to give them the imposing effect of bas-reliefs, formed part of a set of oval frescoes of various allegories and muses in an assortment of sizes (see Christie’s New York, 22 May 1998, lots 104-106). They must have been commissioned as part of a large-scale decorative scheme for a Venetian villa, but as yet cannot be linked to a known commission. Their perspective suggests they likely served as overdoors.

    While these and the other frescoes from the as-yet-unidentified villa were published by Morassi as ‘painted in the main by Domenico [Tiepolo] and collaborators’ (loc. cit.), he reconsidered his assessment of their quality following cleaning and, in a letter dated 15 January 1963, declared the entire group to be by Giambattista. Morassi dates the pictures to the early 1740s, when Giambattista had just completed his first great ecclesiastical fresco cycle for I Gesuiti in Venice and was executing his magnificent ceiling fresco of the Chariot of the Sun for the Palazzo Clerici in Milan.

    A pair from the same set featuring An allegorical female figure and An Allegory of Victory were recently sold at Christie’s, London, 8 December 2015, lot 40.


    Brass collection, Venice, until 1925.
    Dr. Adrien Fauchier-Magnan, Paris.
    Comte de Boisvouvray, Paris.
    Anonymous sale; Christie's, New York, 22 May 1998, lot 104 ($134,500), where acquired by the present owner.


    A. Morassi, A Complete Catalogue of the Paintings of G. B. Tiepolo, 1962, p. 40, as 'in the main by Domenico [Tiepolo] and collaborators'.