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Carlo Innocenzo Carlone (Scaria 1686-1775 Como)
Carlo Innocenzo Carlone (Scaria 1686-1775 Como)

A bozzetto for a ceiling: Merit crowned by Nobility

Carlo Innocenzo Carlone (Scaria 1686-1775 Como)
A bozzetto for a ceiling: Merit crowned by Nobility
oil on canvas
33¾ x 40¼ in. (85.7 x 102.2 cm.)
Freiherr Detlev von Hadeln collection, Venice, 1920.
Dr. Fritz Haussmann, Berlin, 1931.
with Fröhlich, Vienna, 1938 (presumably on consignment).
Dr. Fritz Haussmann, New York.
with Schaeffer Galleries (on consignment), New York, 31 October 1941 (inv. no. 1055), as 'Glorification of a Hero'.
Sold to Schaeffer Galleries, New York, 24 May 1946 ($200) from where purchased by
Dr. O. Burchard, 25 February 1947 ($500).
H. Voss, 'Spätitalienische Gemälde in der Sammlung Dr. Fritz Haussman in Berlin' in Zeitschrift für Bildende Kunst, 65 (1931), p. 161.
Exh. Cat. Nassaisches Landesmuseum Wiesbaden, Italienische Malerei des 17. und 18. Jahrhunderts, Wiesbaden, May and June 1935, no. 32 (illustrated) as 'Entwurf für ein Deckenfresco' (design for a fresco ceiling).
G. Delogu, 'Pittura Italiana del 600 e del 700 nella Collezione Haussmann' in Emporium: Rivista Mensile Illustrata D'Arte e di Cultura, Anno LXI, N. 12, LXXXII, N. 492, December 1935, pp. 327-332. A. Barigozzi Brini and K. Garas, Carlo Innocenzo Carlone, Milan, 1967, pp. 101 and 120.
New York, Schaeffer Galleries, Gems of Baroque Painting, 27 January-28 February 1942, no. 4, illustrated, as 'Glorification of a Hero' and Property from the 'Collection H'.
Oberlin, Ohio, Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, on loan 30 March 1943-12 June 1943.
Detroit, Michigan, Detroit Institute of Art, on loan 28 September 1945. Columbus, Ohio, Columbus Museum of Art, on loan December 1946.

Lot Essay

This painting is a bozzetto for the main ceiling of the Palazzo Gaifami in Brescia. Count Vincenzo Gaifami received his title in 1742 and, to celebrate the occasion, undertook a major decorative campaign. The ceilings of the great staircase and hall were commissioned from Carlone--twelve scenes including the present Merit crowned by Nobility.

In this scene, Merit is represented as an old man crowned by a laurel wreath, who ascends toward a temple where Nobility waits for him. Two putti hold a mirror, a symbol of Wisdom, and a club, a symbol of Strength, while Knowledge holds a flaming torch and the Vices are chained.

Born in Scaria, north Italy, Carlo Carlone trained in Rome in the workshop of Francesco Trevisani and at the Accademia di San Luca. Carlone went on to become one of Europe's most prolific fresco painters of the eighteenth century. He was particularly active in the courts of Germany, Austria and Czecheslovakia. In 1725 Carlone began spending the winter months in Italy, where he continued his work in a more congenial climate, during which time this painting was executed.

The corners of the present work have been overpainted and the original composition was altered.

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