122
122
Italian, early 19th century
After the Antique
ARROTINO
Estimate
15,00020,000
LOT SOLD. 18,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
122
Italian, early 19th century
After the Antique
ARROTINO
Estimate
15,00020,000
LOT SOLD. 18,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Old Master Sculpture & Works of Art

|
London

Italian, early 19th century
After the Antique
ARROTINO

Catalogue Note

The present figure is an iteration of the antique Arrotino ('knife grinder') prototype. The antique marble statue was discovered in Rome during the 16th century and acquired by Cardinal Ferdinando de' Medici in 1578. It was eventually installed in the Tribuna of the Uffizi in 1688. The figure was much admired and imitated by later artists. Most notably, Giovanni Battista Foggini made a marble copy for Versailles in 1684 (Louvre, inv. no. M.R. 1853), and Massimiliano Soldani-Benzi made a bronze version for the Duke of Marlborough in 1710 (formerly Blenheim Palace).

The sculpture was variously interpreted by 16th and 17th century scholars. A popular view characterised the crouching figure as a serf overhearing a political conspiracy in Rome. It is now widely believed to be a Roman copy of a Hellenistic work representing the Scythian executioner of the satyr Marsyas, sharpening his knife in preparation for the flaying (op. cit., p. 156). 

RELATED LITERATURE
F. Haskell and N. Penny, Taste and the Antique. The Lure of Classical Sculpture, New Haven/ London, 1981, pp. 154-7

Old Master Sculpture & Works of Art

|
London