- Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo
- 71 1/8 x 45 英寸；180.8 x 114.2 公分
Acquired at the above sale by A. Alfred Taubman
Knox compared the paintings to the artist’s frescoes in the Oratorio della Purità in Udine and to a set of six detached frescoes painted for the Palazzo da Porto Festa in Vicenza (fig. 1; see Sale: Sotheby’s, London, July 3, 2013, lot 42). The Porto frescoes were commissioned by Giambattista Orazio Porto in circa 1760 and their subjects celebrate the deeds of the Porto family. Like those in the Porto paintings, the present figures are imposing and monumental, posed at different levels of the picture plane, lending a diagonal pitch to each of the compositions. Giandomenico employs the same loose handling and the muted tones of the grisaille appear to absorb the saturated light, casting shallow, jagged shadows beside the figures.
Viewed as isolated pendants, the narrative of the two paintings is not immediately apparent, suggesting they once formed part of a larger series. Concrete details of their commission and other elements from the series are as yet unknown; however, Knox tentatively suggested that they may relate to, or perhaps even be part of, the decorative cycle painted for Villa Volpato Panigai at Nervesa, Treviso. Giandomenico assisted his father in the decoration of the villa in 1754, which was raised by fire in 1918 (G. Piovene, L’opera complete di Giambattista Tiepolo, Milan, 1968, p. 119). The frescoes themselves, however, had been detached in 1899 and were later sold to Wilhelm van Bode for the Kaiser Friedrich Museum, Berlin (Ibid.). The museum suffered terrible damage during the Second World War and all but five of the paintings were destroyed, the surviving works remaining on view today at the Bode Museum, Berlin (Ibid.). The hypothesis remains speculative, however. Unlike the present frescoes, the Villa Volpato Panigai paintings have a gold background, similar to the Porto cycle and there is no record to suggest any elements of the series were sold separately from those bought en masse by van Bode.