Lot 32
  • 32

GIOVANNI FRANCESCO BARBIERI, CALLED IL GUERCINO | An Allegory of Vigilance

Estimate
8,000 - 12,000 USD
Sold
25,000 USD
bidding is closed

Description

  • An Allegory of Vigilance
  • Red chalk

Provenance

Giuseppe Vallardi, Milan (L.1223)

Catalogue Note

The unusual combination of attributes given by Guercino to the standing female figure in this characteristic red chalk drawing, suggests that a depiction of Vigilance was, in all probability, at the forefront of the artist's mind. Indeed the rooster, depicted heartily crowing behind the spear-holding warrior, was taken by Ripa in his Iconologia to symbolize vigilance, a particularly key attribute for such a warrior to possess. Though a painting by Guercino depicting this precise subject is unknown, it seems highly likely that a picture, recently on the New York Art market1 is a studio copy of a lost original by the master. The proximity in key compositional elements between our drawing and this painting is striking, and though the sitter of the painting was previously described as Aurora, an argument for Vigilance seems far more compelling.

We are grateful to Dr. Paul Taylor for his kind assistance in identifying the iconography depicted in this drawing, as well as for bringing the associated painting to our attention.

1. Sale, New York, Doyle, 25 January 2012, lot 30 (as Dutch School, 17th Century)

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