Recto: A Bishop Verso: A drapery study
Property from the Collection of David and Louise Carter
Gorinchem 1566 - 1651 Utrecht
Recto: A Bishop
Verso: A drapery study
Pen and reddish-brown ink and red chalk and wash, heightened with white (recto); red chalk and touches of black chalk, heightened with white (verso)
292 by 187 mm; 11 ½ by 7 ⅜ in
Hinge mounted to a double sided cream mount. There is scattered foxing to the recto and some minor areas of oxidization to the white heightening. There are some small abrasions to the recto and a little overall toning to the sheet. The verso is reinforced with a narrow strip of paper to the four edges and there is some slight toning and gray staining to the sheet. The drawing remains in relatively good condition throughout with the combination of media, both recto and verso, well preserved. Sold in a modern giltwood frame.
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.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.
The recto of the present sheet fits very securely into a group of twenty one drawings, described by Bolten as the so-called "Bishops",1 based on the fact that the models employed by Bloemaert were adorned in ecclesiastical robes, and the figures portrayed were inevitably intended for devotional images. The vast majority of drawings from this very distinctive group are similarly executed in a combination of red chalk and wash, with highly comparable examples now housed in European institutions including the Albertina, Vienna,2 and the Musée du Louvre, Paris.3Whilst Bolten notes that some of the figures from the "Bishops" group were used by Bloemaert in subsequent painted compositions, such as The Church Fathers, "the result is almost always a conversion of poise, gestures and drapery and never an exact copy."4 Many of the studies, including the present drawing, were not, however, used in paintings, but instead served the more general purpose of preparing the artist for drawing.
1. J. Bolten, Abraham Bloemaert c.1565-1651, The Drawings, Leiden 2007, p. 292, no. 869 (recto), reproduced vol. II, p. 290
2. Ibid., nos. 866 and 878
3. Ibid., no. 879