AUGUSTE-JEAN-BAPTISTE VINCHON | FIVE STUDIES OF HORSES' HEADS, AFTER RAPHAEL'S FRESCOES IN THE STANZE VATICANE
Property from Carlo Orsi Gallery, Milan
Paris 1789 - Bad Ems 1855
FIVE STUDIES OF HORSES' HEADS, AFTER RAPHAEL'S FRESCOES IN THE STANZE VATICANE
a set of five, all oil on paper laid on canvas
unframed: each 60 x 76 cm.; 23 5/8 x 30 in.
framed: each 74.6 x 89.5 cm.; 29 3/8 in.
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The overall condition of these sketches is good, particularly in the beautiful white tones, and they are characterised by lively brushwork and strong impasto. As they were painted on paper and laid on to canvas, the paper joins are visible in places with the naked eye and under UV light, and have been subsequently made up to form a rectangle in the case of the brown horse facing left. Some of the darker tones have been retouched, for example in the dappled horse and in the brown horse facing right. Ready to hang.
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. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color 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. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.
“The rigorous study of ancient art and the “Old Masters” was a fundamental part of every painter’s training until the modern era. Indeed, such innovative painters as Degas and Picasso spent time in their youth copying the art of their artistic forebears. Like so many others, Vinchon found his source of inspiration in Rome. These studies of horses’ heads are taken from Raphael’s frescoes in the Vatican stanze, and demonstrate the young painter’s mastery of classical form. For me, these lushly rendered sketches are both beautiful paintings, but also fundamental to understanding the later career of the young artist, who would go on to become one of the great fresco painters of his age.”
These five heads were painted by Vinchon between 1815 and 1817 when the artist was in Rome, having won the Prix de Rome from the Académie Royale de Paris in 1814. As the present studies show, many visiting artists would further their artistic education by copying the great masters of the past, whose work adorned the walls of Rome's palaces. Upon his return to Paris, Vinchon became one of the leading portraitists and history painters in Restoration France. Each of the horses is taken from Raphael's frescoes at the Vatican. The first painting of the grey horse facing to the right is a study of Constantine's magnificent horse in the very centre of the fresco depicting the Battle of the Milvian Bridge in the Room of Constantine. The second, third and fourth horses are also taken from that fresco. The fifth horse, the only one shown unbridled, is taken from the fresco of The Meeting of Pope Leo and Attila the Hun in the Room of Heliodorus.
Another example of Vinchon copying the fresco of the Battle of the Milvian Bridge is the remarkably similar canvas sold in Paris, Sotheby's, 23 June 2011, lot 108, which until 1998 had remained in the artist's family.