- Museum number
Aspertini album (so-called London II):
Folio 39 recto (drawing numbered 77): Elevation of the Belvedere court seen as a ruin
Folio 39 verso (drawing numbered 78): Cross-section of one side of the Colosseum
Recto: black chalk with brown wash, heightened with white ( mainly discoloured)
Verso: black chalk with brown and greenish wash, traces of white heightening (discoloured)
- Production date
Height: 219 millimetres
Width: 159 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- For comment on the album to which this sheet belongs, see 1862,0712.394
f. 39 recto (no. 77)
According to Ackerman (1954, p. 206) this is a fantastic elevation of the eastern corridors of the lower court in the Cortile del Belvedere in the Vatican and it depends upon the same source of f. 1862,0712.434r and of f. 41v of the so-called Codex Coner by Bernardo della Volpaia of 1520-25 (Ackerman cit., fig. 7). The structure is not only in a ruinous state, but the cornice above the first order slants down to the left. The figures below seem to be trying to shield themselves from this seemingly falling building. It is almost certainly an allusion to the accident of January 1531, when a long stretch of Bramante's corridors in the lower court caved in from the ground floor arcade to the upper loggia, and it does denote a certain witt on Aspertini's side. For further details see Ackerman, cit., pp.8ff. and Bober 1957, p. 89).
For other derivations from the Codex Coner's source see the verso of this drawing and the recto of the following sheet. See also introduction under 1862,0712.394.
Lit.: J.S. Ackerman, 'The Cortile del Belvedere', Città del Vaticano 1954, pp. 21-2, 206 (cat. 17a- referred to as f. 29r instead of f. 39r); P. Bober, 'Drawings after the Antique by Amico Aspertini. Sketchbooks in the British Museum', London 1957 (with previous literature)
f. 39 verso (no. 78)
As noted by Bober (1957, p. 89), this is a cross section and partial plan of the Colosseum and she refers to both an unspecified earlier architect's sketchbook and to the so-called Codex Coner by Bernardo della Volpaia in the Soane Museum (f. 34v-35; see www.census.de, ID 205955). Nesselrath (1992, p. 156) believes that this and the following sheet (1862,0712.433recto) are copied from Giuliano da Sangallo's 'Taccuino Senese' (f. 5v-6r; see www.census.de, ID 17613 ) and he wonders whether Aspertini had the possibility to see both books (Coner and Senese) in the house of a member of the Sangallo family.
Lit.: P. Bober, 'Drawings after the Antique by Amico Aspertini. Sketchbooks in the British Museum', London 1957; A. Nesselrath, 'Codex Coner- 85 years on', in "Cassiano Dal Pozzo's Paper Museum", II (Quaderni Puteani III), Milano 1992, pp. 145-67
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
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