PIER FRANCESCO MOLA | Portrait of a bearded man, possibly the artist's father
PIER FRANCESCO MOLA | Portrait of a bearded man, possibly the artist's father
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Property from a European Private Collection

PIER FRANCESCO MOLA | Portrait of a bearded man, possibly the artist's father

Estimate: 60,000 - 80,000 GBP

Property from a European Private Collection

PIER FRANCESCO MOLA | Portrait of a bearded man, possibly the artist's father

Estimate: 60,000 - 80,000 GBP

Lot Details

Description

Property from a European Private Collection

PIER FRANCESCO MOLA

Coldrerio 1612 - 1666 Rome

Portrait of a bearded man, possibly the artist's father


oil on canvas

62.2 x 47.6 cm.; 24½ x 18¾ in.

Condition Report

The canvas is lined and the paint surface is clean with a clear varnish. The impasto brushwork is well preserved. There are no major damages visible to the naked eye. Inspection under ultraviolet light reveals a few small, cosmetic retouchings in the background as well as in the man's face and hair, and slightly more concentrated areas in the bottom of his beard and along the side of his right cheek. In overall very good condition.


"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. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.

NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."

Cataloguing

Provenance

Anonymous sale, New York, Sotheby's, 17 January 2005, lot 154, for $140,000;

With Robilant + Voena, London and Milan;

From whom acquired by the present collector.

Literature

F. Petrucci, 'Mola e il suo tempo', in Mola e il suo tempo. Pittura di figura a Roma dalla Collezione Koelliker, F. Petrucci (ed.), exh. cat., Milan 2005, p. 61, reproduced p. 63;

F. Petrucci, 'Un nuovo dipinto di Pier Francesco Mola. Euclide con un discepolo', in Svizzeri a Roma nella storia nella cultura nell'economia dal Cinquecento ad oggi, Arte e Storia, vol. VIII, 2007 p. 216;

F. Petrucci Pittura di ritratto a Roma, il '600, Rome 2008, vol II, p. 354, reproduced vol. III, fig. 483;

F. Petrucci, Pier Francesco Mola, Rome 2012, p. 261, cat. no. A29, reproduced p. 149.

Catalogue Note

Dottor Francesco Petrucci proposes that this portrait, datable to circa 1660–65, may depict the artist's father, the architect Giovan Battista Mola (1585–1665), in the guise of a biblical figure or an ancient philosopher. He specifically compares the physiognomy with that in the portrait of Giovan Battista in the Accademia di San Luca, Roma.1 


As Petrucci notes, the canvas could correspond to a work of the same size listed in the 1712 inventory of Cardinal Giovan Battista Costagui: 'una testa di vecchio, in tela da testa, del Mola.' The work reappears in the 1715 inventory. Petrucci also notes that Cardinal Fesch is recorded in 1841 as owning a painting by Mola described in much the same way: 'Demi-figure représentant un vieillard, ouvrage où l'expression s'unit à une savante imitation de la nature, par Mola.'


1 G. Incisa della Rocchetta, La collezione dei ritratti dell'Accademia di San Luca, Rome 1979, p. 41, cat. no. 106, reproduced p. 144.

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