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Italian Sketchbook - Drawings pp. 20(v) and 21(r)
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Richard Wilson (1713/14-1782)
Italian Sketchbook - Drawings pp. 20(v) and 21(r)
1754
Graphite with black and white chalk on medium, rough, blued white wove paper
281 x 210 mm (each sheet)
11 1/16 x 8 1/4 in. (each sheet)
B1977.14.359 v20 & r21
D280/20
20(v) is an outline view of a bridge in a wooded river valley with a tower in the distance
21(r) depicts a strigated sarcophagus at an oblique angle surmounted by the feet of a colossal female figure
New Haven 1981 (90 & 90a)
Oldfield Bowles; given to Sir George Beaumont, 1784; thence by descent until 1963, when sold to Paul Mellon
21(r) inscribed upper left in black chalk: Medici
20(v) The landscape is unidentified
21(r) This late 3rd century sarcophagus of a baker and his wife was drawn by Wilson in the garden of the Villa Medici but its provenance is obscure. The colossal female figure above represents the Goddess Roma. It was originally purchased by Cardinal d'Este for his garden in the Quirinal and was later given by Pope Gregory XIII to Cardinal Medici whose collection was housed at the Villa Medici, now the Académie Nationale de France, where it remains.
E72/4 Thomas Hastings after Wilson, Villa Emelia, 1820, The British Museum
E72/4A Thomas Hastings after Wilson, Villa Emelia, 1820, The British Museum
P117 Villa Emiliana near Rome, Private Collection, England
P117A Villa Emiliana near Rome, Private Collection, Scotland
Clements noted that the slightly damaged striated marble sarcophagus has a roundel (clipeus) at its centre bearing the bust of a baker and his wife and beneath, two men - one pouring the contents of a barrel into a sack. At each side is a large figure - one male, one female. A similar sarcophagus appears in P117 Villa Emiliana near Rome, Private Collection, England, and other paintings by Wilson.
Object ID: 6363
Sutton & Clements 1968, vol. 1, pp. 19-20; vol. 2, pp. 39-40
Only two sketchbooks by Wilson have survived - the present one (D280-D280/33) and D53-D53/81 Studies and Designs by R. Wilson done in Rome in the Year MDCCLII, Victoria & Albert Museum, London (E.3586-1922).
15/07/2016