Sienese (?) School, circa 1400
Sienese (?) School, circa 1400
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Sienese (?) School, circa 1400

The Virgin with the Christ Child and a Saint (recto); A man holding a bow and a standing saint in prayer (verso)

Sienese (?) School, circa 1400
The Virgin with the Christ Child and a Saint (recto); A man holding a bow and a standing saint in prayer (verso)
pen and brown ink on partially red prepared paper, touches of white heightening, watermark three hills with a cross (close to Briquet no. 11725, Florence, circa 1423-1424)
4 ½ x 6 ¾ in. (12.1 x 16.9 cm)
Possibly Dukes of Savoy-Aosta, Turin (according to the Landolt typescript catalogue).
with Francis Matthiesen, London, 1947 (as Parri Spinelli).
Baron Paul Hatvany (1899-1977), London; Christie’s, London, 24 June 1980, lot 1 (as Central Italian School circa 1400), where acquired by Robert Landolt (L. 2223a).
M. Knoedler, New York, Great Master Drawings of Seven Centuries: A Benefit Exhibition of Columbia University for the Scholarship Fund of the Department of Fine Arts and Archeology, exhib. cat., 1959, under no. 2.
J. Scholz, Drawings from Tuscany and Umbria 1350-1700, exhib. cat., Mills College, Art Gallery, 1961, under no. 89.
I.Q. van Regteren Altena et al., Selected Drawings from the Printroom, exhib. cat., Amsterdam, Rijksmuseum, 1965, under no. 1.
B. Degenhart and A. Schmitt, Corpus der italienischen Zeichnungen 1300-1450, I, Süd- und Mittelitalien, Berlin, 1968, no. 69, III, figs. 116a-b, under no. 73.
F. Bellini et al., I disegni antichi degli Uffizi: I tempi del Ghiberti, 1978, p. XXII, note 9.
C.J. Frerichs, Italiaanse tekeningen, II, De 15de en 16de eeuw, exhib. cat., Amsterdam, Rijksprentenkabinet, 1981, under no. 1.
A.J. Elen, Italian Late-Medieval and Renaissance Drawing-Books from Giovannino de Grassi to Palma Giovane. A Codicological Approach, Ph.D. dissertation, 1995, pp. 172-174, under no. 5.
Zurich, Graphische Sammlung ETH, Zwiegespräch mit Zeichnungen. Werke des 15. bis 18. Jahrhunderts aus der Sammlung Robert Landolt, 2013-2014, no. 1, ill. (catalogue entry by G. Freuler).
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Stijn Alsteens
Stijn Alsteens

Lot Essay

A precious record of the development of drawing on the threshold of the Renaissance, this double-sided sheet was originally part of an Italian model-book datable to the early 15th Century. Developed from a Medieval tradition of copying, these collections of drawings constituted the visual archive of an artistic workshop, as they contained a repertory of motifs intended for paintings, sculpture and textiles and, as patterns, they were meant to be copied by pupils learning their craft. On this sheet, which is trimmed and was originally larger, two figures are drawn on each side, standing in a sequence of hieratic poses: a Virgin and Child and a female (?) saint on the recto, a Dominican friar in prayer (Saint Dominic?) and a hunter with a bow (perhaps an archaic depiction of Saint Sebastian) on the verso. The unusual pen and ink technique on red preparation brought Janos Scholz in 1976 (op. cit., under no. 89) to connect this sheet with a celebrated double-sided drawing by Lorenzo Monaco in the Uffizi (inv. 11 E; see H. Chapman in Fra Angelico to Leonardo. Italian Renaissance Drawings, exhib. cat., London, British Museum and Florence, Galleria degli Uffizi, 2010-2011, no. 4, ill.). While the technique and preparation of the two sheets are similar, Monaco’s confident penmanship and stylized elegance differ somewhat from the bulkier figures on the Landolt drawing, possibly the work of a pupil or follower of Monaco. While I.Q. van Regteren Altena attributed it to Mariotto di Nardo, whose late style was inspired by Monaco’s, more recently Gaudenz Freuler has suggested the names of other artists active between Lucca, Pisa and Siena at the beginning of the Quattrocento, like Taddeo di Bartolo, Martino di Bartolomeo, and the Sienese sculptor Francesco Valdambrino (ca. 1375-1435) (op. cit., 2013-2014, no. 1).

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