Lot 226
  • 226

Carlo Francesco Nuvolone

80,000 - 120,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Carlo Francesco Nuvolone
  • Lot and his daughters;Neptune and Amphitrite
  • a pair, both on panel, marouflaged


The following condition report has been provided by Simon Parkes of Simon Parkes Art Conservation, Inc. 502 East 74th St. New York, NY 212-734-3920, simonparkes@msn.com, an independent restorer who is not an employee of Sotheby's. Both panels are currently unreinforced on the reverse. Horizontal wooden inserts were originally intended for the reverse, but these are no longer in place. The panels are slightly curved from left to right, but are in beautiful condition nonetheless. The paintings have not been cleaned for many years. The paint layers of both works are stable. In the composition of the man holding the nude aloft there are recent scratches to the painting around her upheld left hand. In a few spots in each picture there are small holes, visible on the front and reverse, which correspond to woodworm. This is no longer an active infestation and there is no need for ongoing concern in this case. When the paintings are clean, old restorations will become more visible around the edges and in a few isolated spots. It is clear in both compositions, however, that the figures are very healthy and what restoration has been applied is quite minimal.
"This lot is offered for sale subject to Sotheby's Conditions of Business, which are available on request and printed in Sotheby's sale catalogues. The independent reports contained in this document are provided for prospective bidders' information only and without warranty by Sotheby's or the Seller."

Catalogue Note

Nuvolone’s beautiful treatment of Lot and his Daughters is based on Simon Vouet’s painting in the Musee des Beaux-Arts, Strasbourg.  It was common practice for Lombard artists to reproduce compositions following engravings of celebrated works.  Nuvolone was certainly no exception, and it is likely Vouet’s invention came to his attention via an engraving by Michel Dorigny, who reproduced much of the French artist’s oeuvre.   

Rape of Proserpina by Carlo Francesco Nuvolone, though bearing the inscription Procaccini on the reverse, with a similar composition to Neptune and Amphitrite here, was sold at Christie’s London in 2006 and was later published by Filippo Ferro in 2010.1  While the compositions are analagous, Nuvolone’s treatment here is more advanced, the billowing drapery is more pleasing to the eye and indicative of movement, the contrapposto pose of Neptune is more sophisticated and the placement of the figures, at the center of the composition before the carriage, is more balanced.

We are grateful to Prof. Filippo Ferro for endorsing an attribution of this lot to Carlo Francesco Nuvolone.  The paintings will be published by him in a forthcoming issue of the Florentine periodical, Valori Tattili.


1.  Anonymous sale, London, Christie’s, 28 April 2006, lot 115; published in F.M. Ferro, “Postille a Carlo Francesco Nuvolone”, in Piacenza, terra di frontiera : pittori lombardi e liguri del Seicento : dipinti e disegni inediti, Piacenza 2010, p. 32, reproduced fig. 7.