Lot 8
  • 8

Attributed to Lelio Orsi

5,000 - 7,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • Lelio Orsi
  • Design for a frieze, including satyrs, animals and putti entwined with acanthus leaves 
  • Pen and brown ink and wash, on the right a faint sketch in red chalk;
    numbered in pen and brown ink: 11 and on the backing a pencil attribution Lelio de Novelara


Probably from an album of drawings offered for sale in 1678 by Jean Dughet;
possibly George Ramsay, 8th Earl of Dalhousie (died 1787);
possibly his son, George Ramsay, 9th Earl of Dalhousie (1770-1838), who married Christian, only child of Charles Broun of Colstoun;
their son, James Ramsay, 10th Earl and 1st Marquess of Dalhousie (1812-1860);
his eldest daughter, Lady Susan Broun-Ramsay (died 1898);
by whom bequeathed to her great-niece, Edith Christian Baird, later Lady Broun-Lindsay;
thence by descent

Catalogue Note

This project for a frieze is typical of Orsi's imagination and of his skill in rendering these elaborate decorative designs.  It can be closely compared with two similar drawings: one at Kingston Lacy, the other in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.Both studies have been dated by Fiorella Frisoni to the 1560s as they show the influence of Perino del Vaga and of the Fontainebleau artists, whose works Orsi would have known through the engravings of Fantuzzi and Jean Mignon.2  Orsi made trips to Rome in 1546-47 and 1554-5, but the presence of Primaticcio in Bologna in 1563 may have revived Orsi's interest in the art of Fontainebleau.

1. F. Frisoni, et al., Lelio Orsi, exhib. cat., Reggio Emilia, Teatro Valli, 1987-8, pp. 130-31, nos. 108 and 109, both reproduced

2.  First discussed by S. Béguin, 'Emilia and Fontainebleau: Aspects of a Dialogue,' The Age of Correggio and the Carracci, exhib. cat., Washington, National Gallery of Art, et al., 1986-87, pp. 24-25