Drawing, executed in pencil, pen and brown ink with wash, 293 × 225 mm.
This drawing of an unusually elaborate early Imperial altar or statue base was commissioned by Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588-1657) for his celebrated “Museo Cartaceo”. Although better-known as a specialist in natural history, the draughtsman Vincenzo Leonardi also supplied Cassiano with drawings after the antique. In 1625, he was the only artist to accompany Cassiano on a legation led by Cardinal Francesco Barberini to France, where he documented for Cassiano objects of botanical, ornithological, geological, and archaeological interest. The altar recorded on our sheet is identified with one now in the Musée des Beaux-Arts at Lyon; it is speculated that it was already in France in 1625, and was drawn by Leonardi on this trip. Two other aspects of the altar by the same hand and also from the “Museo Cartaceo” are in the so-called “Franks volumes” at the British Museum (volume I, folios 150-151). Our drawing was exhibited in Rome together with other drawings and paintings from the Dal Pozzo collections (Galleria nazionale d’arte antica, Palazzo Barberini, 29 September-26 November 2000) and also in Biella (Museo del territorio Biellese, 16 December 2001-16 March 2002).
Drawing, executed in pen and brown ink and brown wash over black chalk, laid to Stirling-Maxwell album sheet of wove paper, 128 × 288 mm.
This drawing of a panel relief showing maidens draping a candelabrum (‘Nuptiale Festum’) was commissioned by Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588-1657) for his ‘Museo Cartaceo’, and later passed through the collections of Pope Clement XI, his nephew Cardinal Alessandro Albani, King George III, and the antiquary Sir William Stirling-Maxwell. In the early sixteenth century, the marble relief was located in the atrium of Old St. Peter’s in Rome; after 1617, it was installed with its pendant relief of five female figures dancing (‘Nuptiales Choreae’) above opposite doors in the Salone of the Casino of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, on the Pincian hill. Its fame grew steadily and was assured by its inclusion (again with its pendant) in Perrier’s Icones (1645) and in Bartoli and Bellori’s Admiranda romanarum antiquitatum (1693). In 1807, the relief and its pendant were sold to Napoleon Bonaparte and sent to Paris; since 1817, both have been displayed in the Louvre.
The sheet was exhibited in 2001 (I segreti di un collezionista: le straordinarie raccolte di Cassiano dal Pozzo 1588-1657, catalogue of an exhibition held at the Museo del territorio Biellese, Biella, from 16 December 2001-16 March 2002, edited by Francesco Solinas, Roma: Edizioni De Luca, 2001, p.230 no. 140, with reproduction).
Two drawings, uniformly executed in pen and dark brown ink and brown wash over black chalk, laid to Stirling-Maxwell album sheets of wove paper, 408 × 272 mm and 407 × 267 mm. Uniformly framed.
These decorative drawings were extracted in 1990 from one of the two albums of “Drawings by Italian Old Masters. Sculpture” assembled circa 1871 by the Scottish antiquary Sir William Stirling Maxwell. The two albums contained mostly drawings commissioned by Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588-1637) for his celebrated “Museo Cartaceo”, a corpus of drawings of antiquities in Rome. After Cassiano’s death, the “Museo Cartaceo” was augmented by his younger brother, Carlo Antonio dal Pozzo, then by Cardinal Alessandro Albani, who incorporated drawings inherited from his uncle, Pope Clement XI, including a hoard accumulated by the artist Carlo Maratti. While our two drawings might have been introduced into the “Museo Cartaceo” by Carlo Antonio, before ill health brought his collecting to a halt in 1685, it is more likely that they were executed in the eighteenth century, and were added by Cardinal Albani. Both vases are drawn in mirror image of the originals, suggesting that they could be preparatory drawing for an unrealised suite of large-format engravings of Roman antiquities (they do not correspond to any known prints).
A series of forty-four large chalk drawings (circa 482/525 × 345/360 mm) of exemplary antique statues in Rome, perhaps executed for an English patron, or with a view toward eventual publication in England, as they are scaled in both English piedi and Roman palmi. Nicolas Mosman is known chiefly by a set of drawings of paintings in Roman collections, produced between 1764 and 1787 for Brownlow Cecil, 9th Earl of Exeter. In Rome, Mosman was linked socially and professionally with the painter Mengs, the archaeologist Winckelmann, the painter-dealer Thomas Jenkins, and the restorer Bartolomeo Cavaceppi. His selection of sculpture reflects the revaluation of antique sculpture then being undertaken by Mengs and Winckelmann, and the commercial transactions of Jenkins and Cavaceppi. In addition to the narrow canon of masterpieces established by Mengs, Mosman documents recent additions to the Capitoline collection (purchases by Clement XII from the Albani and Odescalchi collections, and by Benedict XIV from the D'Este collection and from digger-dealers), and sculptures within the Barberini, Borghese, Casali, Farnese, Giustiniani, Ludovisi, Medici, Pighini, Spada, and Verospi family collections recently lauded by Winckelmann. Four drawings depict antique sculptures restored by Bartolomeo Cavaceppi and introduced onto the market in 1754/1755, 1764, 1766/1768 respectively; another two are of modern sculptures: a bronze statue of Mercury by Guglielmo della Porta in the Palazzo Farnese and a marble statue of Santa Susanna by François Duquesnoy in S. Maria di Loreto. The drawings were mounted on album leaves in the nineteenth century, when a title-leaf and a contents-leaf were supplied, and the sheets numbered sequentially in ink. The date “1755” in the title perhaps was found on a portfolio that previously held the loose sheets; it could be the date of the earliest drawing, made soon after Mosman's arrival in Rome.
Bound with Artaud (Antoine Marie François). Description d'une mosaïque représentant des jeux du cirque, découverte à Lyon le 18 Février 1806. Par F. Artaud. Lyon, De l'Imprimerie de Ballanche, père et fils, 1806
The second work in the volume documents a mosaic pavement depicting a chariot race in a circus, uncovered in 1806 in the garden of the pharmacist Paul Macors on the ramparts of Ainay.