MARCO LIBERI | JOSEPH AND POTIPHAR'S WIFE
Property from a Beverly Hills Collection
Padua 1640- active until the end on the 17th Century
JOSEPH AND POTIPHAR'S WIFE
oil on canvas
canvas: 36 by 47½ in.; 91.4 by 120.7 cm.
framed: 50½ by 61½ in.; 128.3 by 156.2 cm.
The canvas is lined. The colors of the figures in the foreground are for the most part well preserved under a yellowed varnish. The details in the background are hard to read. A vertical line of possible repair runs from top edge to bottom edge, through the hand of the male figure at right. Inspection under UV is difficult to read due to the old varnish, though there could be possibly old retouching to the craquelure and other spots scattered throughout. Offered framed.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.
Marco Liberi was the son of the painter Pietro Liberi, under whom he trained. This scene is taken from the Book of Genesis 39:1–20, when Potiphar's wife attempts to seduce Joseph, a slave her husband bought. This was a popular subject, which Liberi explored more than once, such as with his painting now in a private collection.1 In both works, Joseph is making a similar hand gesture, which is repeated Liberi's paintings.
We are grateful to Prof. Ugo Ruggeri for endorsing the attribution to Marco Liberi on the basis of photographs.
1. Oil on canvas, 88 by 115 cm. See U. Ruggeri, Pietro e Marco Liberi. Pittori nella Venezia del Seicento, Rimini 1996, p. 288, cat. no. M15, reproduced.