- Museum number
Studies for a Resurrection, with Christ rising from the tomb and hand studies
Silverpoint, heightened with white (partly discoloured), over blind stylus (some ruled), on grey prepared paper
- Production date
- 1495-1497 (circa)
Height: 378 millimetres
Width: 255 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Watermark: three mounts (visible in raking light)
The main figure is a study for Christ in the 'Resurrection' altarpiece painted for the Capponi chapel in the church of San Bartolomeo a Monteoliveto in Via Monte Oliveto, Florence, and now in the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence (8363; illustrated in Metropolitan cat p. 340). Although the pose of Christ in the finished work corresponds closely to that studied here, the drawing has a clearly antique character - the wreath of vine-leaves, the exposed genitals and the boyish, effeminate type - not found in the painting. This may be due to the figure having been based on some classical sculptural prototype, elements of which were retained in this study but had to be omitted in favour of a conventional image of the Risen Christ in the altarpiece. Carpaneto thinks that the drawing is from an earlier date than the painting, yet this seems unlikely as the flag is not, as she suggests, a later addition and the blessing gesture of the right hand shows the figure was always intended as a Risen Christ. The painting is undated, but it is generally placed in the second half of the 1490s and the drawing must be from the same period. The two studies on either side are, as Carpaneto first noted, preparatory for the hands of the angel on the left of the so-called Benson tondo, a painting of the Virgin and Child with the Infant Baptist sold at Christie's, 23 June 1967 (illustrated Carpaneto, 1970, fig. 13) which can be dated to the second part of the 1490s.
The medium of the drawing has been confirmed by Satoko Tanimoto and Giovanni Verri from the Department of Scientific Research in a campaign of investigation of the Italian 15th century drawings linked to the forthcoming 2010 exhibition. The analytical methods employed have been non-destructive and non-contact ones: infrared and ultraviolet imaging, with XRF and Raman spectrometry.
Lit.: B. Berenson, 'Drawings of the Florentine Painters', Chicago, 1938, II, no. 764, III, fig. 260; A.E. Popham and P. Pouncey, 'Italian drawings in the BM, the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries', London, 1950, I, no. 60 and p. 209, II, pl. LXV (with previous literature); M.G. Carpaneto, 'Raffaellino del Garbo I ', "Antichità Viva", IX, 4, 1970, p. 12, fig. 14; idem, 'Raffaellino del Garbo II 'Antichità Viva", X, 1, 1971, pp. 6-7; L. Ragghianti Collobi, 'Il Libro de'Disegni del Vasari', Florence, 1974, I, p. 99, II, fig. 271; R. Bartolini, in exhib. cat., Uffizi, Florence, 'Il Disegno Fiorentino del tempo di Lorenzo il Magnifico', 1992, no. 2.33; G.R. Goldner, in exhib. cat., New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 'The Drawings of Filippino Lippi and His Circle', 1997, no. 112 (with further literature); C. Van Cleave, 'Master Drawings of the Italian Renaissance', London, 2007, p. 114, illustrated p. 115; H. Chapman and M. Faietti, exhib. cat., BM, London, `Fra Angelico to Leonardo: Italian Renaissance Drawings`, 2010, no. 69, pp.244-5 (cat. entry by M.M. Rook).
This drawing was issued as a coloured facsimile by the British Museum in 'Reproductions of Drawings by Old Masters in the British Museum', Part II, Published by the Trustees, in 1891 where it was number IV and described there as 'Raffaelino del Garbo, Study of A Partly Draped Figure and of Hands.' The facsimile did not inlcude the mount.
Popham & Pouncey 1950
As was first noted in the 1858 'Guide', the figure is a study for that of Christ in the 'Resurrection' now in the Uffizi (no. 8363; Van Marle, xii, fig. 288), a picture which was described by Vasari as in the Capponi Chapel in S. Bartolomeo a Monte Oliveto. It is universally recognized as the work of Raffaellino del Garbo. No doubt Vasari himself was aware of the connection between his drawing and the picture. The latter is dated by Scharf (op. cit., pp. 161 f.) between 1496 and 1500, by Neilson about 1496, by Van Marle about 1505.
Literature: BB 764, fig. 260 and pl. LX of 1st ed.; B.M. Guide, 1858, no. 13; G. Morelli, Die Galerie zu Berlin, Leipzig, 1893, p. 16 (repr.); H. Ulmann, Repertorium, xvii (1894), p. 110; B.M. Guide, 1895, no. 25; F. Wickhoff, Prussian Jahrbuch, xx (1899), p. 215; Gronau in Thieme-Becker, xiii, p. 171; A. Scharf, op. cit., p. 162; O. Kurz, O.M.D., xii (1937/8), p. 34; B.M. Reproductions, ii (1891), IV.
Popham & Pouncey 1950: Addenda
A curious feature of this drawing is its combination of pagan and Christian elements. That the figure is intended to be Christ is proved by the gesture of the right hand, the banner in the left hand, and the indisputable connection witii the Uffizi picture; but the disposition of the drapery (exposing the genitals), the epicene type of figure, the youthful, girlish head (quite unlike the conventional Christ-like head in the painting), crowned with what appears to be a wreath of vine-leaves, seem, with scarcely less certainty, to be derived from some antique statue, perhaps of the youthful Dionysus.
There is nothing in the handling of the drawing to show that any of the Christian elements were added at a later stage, except possibly the strip of transparent drapery across the stomach, the position of which, incidentally, corresponds with that of the drapery in the picture. Perhaps the artist, while copying or making a pastiche of an antique figure, saw its possibilities as a Risen Christ, and went on to transform it into one.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1984, BM, 'Master Drawings and Watercolours in the British Museum', no. 9
1992 Apr-Jul, Florence, Uffizi Gallery, 'Lorenzo il Magnifico' no. 2.33
1997/8 Oct-Jan, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 'Filippino Lippi'
2003 Oct-Dec, Tokyo, Metropolitan Art Museum, Treasures of BM
2004 Jan-Mar, Kobe, City Museum, Treasures of BM
2004 Apr-Jun, Fukuoka, City Museum, Treasures of BM
2004 Jun-Aug, Niigata, Prefectural Mus of Fine Arts, Treasures of BM
2010 April-July, BM, `Fra Angelico to Leonardo`, no.69
2011, March-June, Uffizi, Florence, 'Figure, Memorie, Spazio: Disegni da Fra'Angelico a Leonardo', no.69
2015 May-Jul, Washington, National Gallery of Art, 'Drawing in Silver and Gold'
2015 10 Sep-6 Dec, London, British Museum, 'Drawing in Silver and Gold'
- Previous owner
Previous owner/ex-collection: Giorgio Vasari (his mount)
Previous owner/ex-collection: Pierre Jean Mariette (L.1852; sale, Paris, 1775, 15 Nov. &c, lot 424?)
Previous owner/ex-collection: Anonymous (T Philipe, 24.iv.1801/116 as Garbo 'A young Bacchus, standing, holding a standard, by RAFFAELLINO DEL GARBO, (Florentine) - silver pen, on prepared ground, heightened, with studies of heads, let into an ornamental border, by Vasari, on the top of which is inscribed - ex collectione olim G. Vasari nunc P.J. Mariette' bt Payne Knight £4-14-0)
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- Vasari's mount inscribed: "Ex Collectione olim G. Vasari,/nunc P.J.Mariette". The Mariette mount has been trimmed. The 1801 T. Philipe catalogue description mentions studies of heads, this is most likely a misreading of hands.
Popham & Pouncey 1950
G. Vasari, on his mount inscribed "RAFFAELLIno DEL GARBO \ PITre FIOto"
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number