Lot 8
  • 8

Alessandro Rosi

40,000 - 60,000 USD
37,500 USD
bidding is closed


  • Alessandro Rosi
  • Cain and Abel
  • oil on canvas
  • 26 3/4  by 20 1/2  in.; 68 by 52 cm.


Volpe collection, Bologna;
With Pietro Cantore, Bologna;
From whom acquired. 


E. Acanfora, Alessandro Rosi, Florence 1994, pp. 41-42, 90, cat. no. 68, reproduced p. 166, fig. 56.

Catalogue Note

This engaging image embodies those qualities of emotional and religious intensity depicted in this sinuous style of the Florentine Seicento for which Alessandro Rosi is admired. In the dramatic scene, Rosi depicts the moment just after Cain has slain his brother Abel, who lays ashen in the foreground, as God the Father appears in a swirl of clouds above.  In Rosi's striking composition, Cain's back is turned to the viewer as he looks up at God above, the drama of their encounter enhanced by the stormy blue and purple sky. 

The artistic personality of Rosi had until the late 20th century been somewhat confused.  Most of his works (including the present painting) had previously, and erroneously, been given to Sigismondo Coccopani, a figure to whom now only a few documented works can be attributed. Rosi appears to have been well aware of the trends in Florentine painting of his day, and worked as an apprentice in the studio of Cesare and Vincezo Dandini along with his contemporary Carlo Dolci.  His fresco series of Allegories in the closed loggia of Palazzo Corsini are among Rosi's most accomplished works, and, as they are fully documented works, have greatly aided in establishing an accepted corpus for this once elusive artist.