By the 1880's Alberto Pasini had achieved the peak of his artistic career and we see a refined level of maturity in his work. The culmination of experience from his many adventurous expeditions to the Orient and Mediterranean combined with his technical skills brings his painting to the level of virtuosismo. This picture 'The recruits' shows the conscripts outside the arsenal of the Topkapi Palace.
This seminal work from the oeuvre of Alberto Pasini reflects the discerning taste of its illustrious provenance. In 1882, the year of its execution, it was bought directly from Pasini's Paris dealer Goupil & Co by Lucy and Timothy Eastman. Eastman was a very successful businessman who started his career in New York under the watchful eye of famed entrepreneur Cornelius Vanderbilt. After successfully overseeing the cattle arm of Vanderbilt's railway company New York Central, he founded his own company exporting cattle and beef to Europe.
In 1845 he had married Lucy Putnam and the couple had two children and they lived in splendour on 70th street, New York, and in Tarrytown, where their neighbours were the Vanderbilts and the Goulds.
The Eastmans belonged to America's upper-class during the so called 'Gilded Age' refering to the extravagant displays of wealth of America's rising super-rich industrialists and financiers in the post-Civil War and post-Reconstruction era.
Like many of their peers, The Eastmans often travelled to Europe which gave them the opportunity to admire and acquire new works of Art to add to their collection.
At Lucy Putnam Eastman's death in 1908 (with an estate valued at $2,377,223), the collection was equally divided between her son Joseph Eastman and the heirs of her deceased daughter Lizzy, who had married Henry Bell, a Glasgow ship-owner. The present lot is an integral part of their family history and has been passed down the generations as a testament to Lucy and Timothy Eastman's collectors' eye.