- Museum number
King David and a prophet, study for decoration of a cupola; seated on clouds facing each other, the king holding a book and pen, putti above
Black chalk, heightened with white, on blue paper
- Production date
Height: 388 millimetres
Width: 233 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Lit.: N. Turner, 'Italian Drawings in the BM, Roman Baroque Drawings', London, 1999, I, no. 105
The attribution to Garzi was first proposed by Philip Pouncey in a letter to the former owner (dated 10 July 1973). As Edward Goodstein was first to point out (note in the files of the Department of Prints and Drawings, dated 20 April 1979), this is a study, with differences, for a section of Garzi's fresco 'God the Father with a Glory of Angels', painted c. 1685-6 in the cupola of the Cappella Cybo, S. Maria del Popolo, Rome (Sestieri, 1972, pp.93-4 and fig.6; Titi, ed. Contardi, 1987, II, p. 382, fig. 1440). The two painted figures differ in several respects from their drawn counterparts, though in both works David is shown in the act of writing the Psalms on what appears to be a stone slab. The presence in the fresco of a harp to the left of David would seem to imply that the lines in the equivalent position in the drawing were intended to indicate this instrument.
A drawing in the Kupferstichkabinett, Berlin, is a finished study, with numerous variations, for three-quarters of the cupola (Berlin, 1969, no. 73 and fig. 36, showing a detail with some of the angels); King David and his companion appear in the left-hand section of the sheet. The Berlin drawing is also executed in black and white chalk on blue-grey paper, and would appear to mark a later phase in the development of the composition than the present sheet.
For a drawing by Carlo Maratti for his altarpiece in the same chapel, see 1938,0611.7 and 1927,0518.6.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- This item has an uncertain or incomplete provenance for the years 1933-45. The British Museum welcomes information and assistance in the investigation and clarification of the provenance of all works during that era.
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number