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40

PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF ROBERT M. EDSEL

Italian School, 16th Century
THE VIRGIN AND CHRIST AT THE TOMB WITH TWO ANGELS
Estimate
100,000150,000
LOT SOLD. 245,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
40

PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF ROBERT M. EDSEL

Italian School, 16th Century
THE VIRGIN AND CHRIST AT THE TOMB WITH TWO ANGELS
Estimate
100,000150,000
LOT SOLD. 245,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Master Paintings: Part I

|
New York

Italian School, 16th Century
THE VIRGIN AND CHRIST AT THE TOMB WITH TWO ANGELS

Provenance

With Maison d'Art, Monte Carlo, 1998;
From whom acquired by the present collector.

Catalogue Note

This beautiful painting on copper has thus far defied attribution, though it was clearly produced by a painter conversant in both Northern and Venetian trends of painting.  Art historians have in recent years suggested the names of a variety of painters, including Paolo Veronese, Pietro Candido, Lambert Sustris and Johann Rottenhammer, but a consensus has yet to be reached.  The composition ultimately derives from a Pietà designed by Michelangelo Buonarotti for his friend, Vittoria Colonna, marchioness of Pescara.  It is not known whether Michelangelo executed the eventual painting but his drawing, dated to circa 1546, survives today in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston (inv. no. 1.2.o.16, fig. 1).  The design for the Virgin’s pose, with her raised arms outstretched and face turned upward toward heaven, enjoyed great popularity, and was employed by Alessandro Allori, Marcello Venusti and Battista del Moro, among others. 

Michelangelo sets his scene at the base of the cross, and Christ’s body is slumped in the lap of the Virgin’s, who supports his weight, as two putti brace his arms over her raised knees.   In the present painting, the artist instead places the figures before Christ’s tomb.  Christ is seated on a stone plinth, his torso and arms supported by two angels, represented here in adult form, and the Virgin, no longer sustaining his weight, is shown on a higher plane, at the mouth of the tomb.  In its present incarnation, the composition relates more closely to an engraving of the Pietà by Battista del Moro, now in the Ortalli collection, Biblioteca Palatina, Parma (inv. no. 1565). 

1.  P. Marini, H. Burns, L. Magagnato et al., Paladio e Verona, exhibition catalogue, Verona 1980, p. 270, cat. no. XI,23, reproduced p. 269, fig. XI,23. 

Master Paintings: Part I

|
New York