Lot 77
  • 77

Jacques Callot Nancy 1592 - 1635

Estimate
120,000 - 180,000 GBP
Sold
288,000 GBP
bidding is closed

Description

  • Jacques Callot
  • the fair at gondreville, or mayday celebrations at Xeuilley
  • black chalk and brown wash, indented for transfer
  • 178 by 332mm

Provenance

Jullienne Collection, sale, 1767, cat. by P. Remy, lot 695, bought by Dumassol;
E. Meaume, his sale, Paris, February 1887, part of lot 273;
The Hon. Thurstan Holland-Hibbert, Melksham (by 1932);
Knutsford Collection, sale, London, Sotheby's, 11 April 1935, lot 100, reproduced;
purchased at the sale, through Colnaghi's, by Dr. Tobias Christ, Basel;
thereafter by inheritance

Exhibited

London, Burlington House, French Art, 1932, no. 668

Literature

C. Dodgson, Vasari Society, IX, 1913-14, reproduced;
L. Zahn, Die Handzeichnungen J. Callot... Munich 1918, p. 76, reproduced fig. 33;
C. de Tolnay, History and Technique of Old Master Drawings, New York 1943, reproduced fig. 227;
Edwin de T. Bechtel, Jacques Callot, New York 1955, reproduced pl. 134;
D. Ternois, L'Art de Jacques Callot, Paris 1962, vol. II, p. 8;
Idem, Jacques Callot, catalogue complet de son oeuvre dessiné, Paris 1962, p. 112, cat. no. 737, reproduced;
Jacques Callot, exhibition catalogue, Nancy, Musée Historique Lorrain, 1992, p. 288, under cat. no. 359

Catalogue Note

This very important and rare work is the preparatory study, in reverse and with some differences, for one of Callot's most admired and popular prints.1  Ternois lists a number of figure studies in the Hermitage, also from the Jullienne Collection, which are related to the print, but no other such complete compositional work survives. The incised contours indicate that this is the drawing Callot used for making the plate, presumably then adding various groups of figures, such as those playing bowls in the right foreground, and the elegant figures with a tree to the left, which are not in the present drawing.  On the basis of the style of the related figure studies, and also the Cross of Lorraine watermark found in the paper of the print, this work is generally dated to the early 1620s.  A related painting was apparently formerly in the Spencer Churchill Collection at Northwick Park.

The subject of the print has been debated. It has traditionally been titled The Fair at Gondreville, which is a village associated with Callot's patron, the Bishop of Toul.  As Paulette Choné noted, however, in the 1992 Callot exhibition catalogue, the inventory of the artist's possessions at his death lists the work as Le village de Xeuilley, which is a place in Lorraine where the Callot family had property, and so that is the title under which the print was exhibited. It was also pointed out in the catalogue that it is specifically a Mayday celebration that Callot has depicted in this superbly complex and animated composition.  

1. Eduard Meaume, Jacques Callot, Paris 1860, p. 295, cat. no. 623

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