Anonymous sale, New York, Christie's, April 15 2008, lot 290; There acquired by the family of the late collector.
At the time of the 2008 sale (see Provenance), Professor Riccardo Lattuada endorsed the attribution to Andrea dell'Asta on the basis of photographs. Dell'Asta was an Italian Baroque painter who trained with Francesco Solimena and primarily painted decorations for churches near Naples and Rome.
This canvas appears to be thinly lined. Overall the painting presents a decorative image that reads well beneath a slightly discolored varnish. Some parts have thinness to the paint, most noticeably in the browns. Some minor, scattered abrasions are on the top left corner, along the right edge, and on the bottom center of the canvas, though this is not too distracting. Thin lines of craquelure are noticeable especially under a bright light throughout the canvas. Remnants of an old horizontal fold or seam is visible across the canvas about 2 in. from the top edge. Inspection under UV reveals scattered spots of retouching throughout, with some more prominent areas scattered here and there, for example below the putti at lower left, at center between both figures, and around the putti at far right. There is an area at the lower center and on the wing of the female figure at right of center where the varnish fluoresces unevenly. The painting is offered in a simple, gilded wood frame. In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.