Christ before Pilate (or Saint Lawrence before the Emperor) (recto)
Studies - a head, a nude figure tied to a column with raised arm (study for Tomb of Julius II), others unidentified (verso)

Maker

(artist)
1475-1564

Title

Christ before Pilate (or Saint Lawrence before the Emperor) (recto)
Studies - a head, a nude figure tied to a column with raised arm (study for Tomb of Julius II), others unidentified (verso)

Date of Production

(circa) 1516

Medium

red chalk, pen and brown ink with brown ink framing lines (recto), red chalk, pen and brown ink (verso), on laid paper

Dimensions

Height: 21.1 cm
Width: 28.2 cm

Accession Number

D.1978.PG.422

Mode of Acquisition

Count Antoine Seilern, bequest, 1978

Credit

The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)

Location

Not currently on display

Keywords






Label Text

The subject of this multi-figured composition has been identified as the Passion scene in which Christ is brought as a prisoner before the Roman governor Pontius Pilate. Unusually, the main protagonists are shown on the extreme left and right whilst the centre is occupied by marginal figures. Their passionate gestures convey the drama of the scene, as does the bold use of the pen. The drawing might be a study for one of the reliefs of the façade of San Lorenzo in Florence, an unrealised project on which Michelangelo worked in 1516-20. The sketch of a leg, at the top of the sheet, is probably connected with the sculptures for the tomb of Pope Julius II in Rome.

Provenance

François de La Noue (d. 1656) [? this according to Rosenberg 2019, who says it is according to Mariette, but there is no mention of this in either of Mariette's catalogues, and Rosenberg more likely took this information from Py 2007, though there this drawing is not specifically identified as coming from that collection]; if so, acquired from him by Everhard Jabach, Paris (1618-1695) (variant of L.2959 on verso, lower right; part of Portfolio O or R in 1695 inventory made after his death, see Py 2007); likely purchased from his heirs by Pierre Crozat, Paris (1665-1740), L.3612 (at lower right); his estate sale, Mariette (Paris), 10 April - 13 May 1741, lot 9 (1 of 6 drawings by Michelangelo); purchased there by Pierre-Jean Mariette, Paris (1694-1774), L.2097 (15.10 francs for the lot); probably his estate sale, Basan (Paris), 15 November 1775 - 30 January 1776, lot 236 (40 sheets by Michelangelo, sold to 8 separate buyers, their names not listed in annotated catalogue); Sir Robert Witt, London (1872-1952), L.2228b, by 1928 (as by Baccio Bandinelli); purchased from him by Dr Francis Springell (1898-1974) and his wife, Portinscale, England, after September 1943 (£800-1,000, based on correspondence in file); their sale, Sotheby’s (London), 28 June 1962, lot 17; purchased there by Heinrich Eisemann (London) on behalf of Dr Bodmer, Geneva (£26,000) (based on correspondence in file); purchased from him via Colnaghi (London) by Count Antoine Seilern, London (1901-1978), April 1963 (£23,100); Princes Gate Bequest 1978

Exhibition History

Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 06/11/2017-12/02/2018

Special Display - Looking at Michelangelo, The Courtauld Gallery, 11/02/2010-06/06/2010

A Passion for Drawings, Collectors at the Courtauld, Courtauld Gallery, London, 28/02/2002-09/06/2002 ...More

Mantegna to Cezanne - Master Drawings from the Courtauld, British Museum, London, 24/02/1983-19/06/1983

The Princes Gate Collection - Drawings (Selection B), The Courtauld Gallery, London, 29/01/1982-25/07/1982

Drawings by Michelangelo in the collection of Her Majesty the Queen at Windsor Castle, the Ashmolean Museum, the British Museum and other English collections, British Museum, London, 06/02/1975-27/04/1975

Loan exhibition of drawings by old masters from the collection of Dr. & Mrs. Francis Springell, Colnaghi, London, 15/10/1959-11/11/1959

Drawings by Michelangelo, British Museum, London, 15/04/1953-28/06/1953

Drawings by Old Masters, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1953 ...Less

Literature

Rosenberg, Paul, Les dessins de la Collection Mariette: écoles italienne et espagnole. 4 vols, Paris 2019
ill. on p. 698 (recto and verso)
vol. II, no. I 1180 on p. 698
The subject is here identified as Christ before Caiaphas.

Bambach, Carmen, Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman and Designer, New Haven and London, Yale University Press, Metropolitan Museum of Art 2017
pl. 78 on p. 108 (recto)
pp. 108 and no. 78 on p. 297
cat. no. 78 (recto only)

Py, Bernadette, Les dessins italiens de Pierre Crozat (1665-1740). L'oeil de Mariette, http://mini-site.louvre.fr/trimestriel/2015/Catalogue_Crozat
p. 39 and note 9 ...More

Frommel, Christoph Luitpold, 'Michelangelos Handschrift und die Chronologie seiner frühen Zeichnungen' in 'Michelangelo als Zeichner: Akten des Internationalen Kolloquiums Wien, Albertina-Museum, 19.-20. November 2010', Münster 2013 - pp. 117-44
fig. 11
pp. 134-35

Zöllner, Frank, Christof Thoenes and Thomas Pöpper, Michelangelo 1475-1564: Das vollständige Werk, Cologne 2007
p. 528, no. 149, p. 754

Py, Bernadette, 'Everhard Jabach: supplement of identifiable drawings from the 1695 estate inventory" in 'Master Drawings', 2007 - pp. 4-37; XLV, 1
pp. 31-32

Joannides, Paul, with Véronique Goarin and Catherine Scheck, Inventaire général des dessins italiens. VI Michel-Ange: élèves et copistes, Louvre, Paris 2003
pp. 245-46 under no. 98

Saslow, James M., The poetry of Michelangelo, New Haven and London 1991
no. A30 on p. 514

Hirst, Michael, Michelangelo and his drawings, London 1988
pl. 84
pp. 2, 48-49

Farr, Dennis, 100 Masterpieces from the Courtauld Collections, London: Courtauld Institute Galleries, 1987
ill. on p. 131 (recto and verso)
pp. 130-1
as Michelangelo, c. 1515-20

Mantegna to Cezanne: Master Drawings from the Courtauld, British Museum, London, 1983
ill. on p. 36 (recto)
cat. no. 28
as Michelangelo

The Princes Gate Collection - Drawings (Selection B), The Courtauld Gallery, London, 1982
cat. no. 171

Hartt, Frederick, Michelangelo drawings, New York and London 1970/71; repr. 1975
p. 116, nos. 130 (verso), 131 (recto)
as by Michelangelo, 'Sketches for a Bound Captive'

de Tolnay, Charles, Corpus dei disegni di Michelangelo, Novara 1975-80
ill. (recto and verso)
vol. I, pp. 89-90, no. 101

Drawings by Michelangelo in the collection of Her Majesty the Queen at Windsor Castle, the Ashmolean Museum, the British Museum and other English collections, British Museum, London, 1975
pp. 73-74
cat. no. 77

Giardi, E.N., Rime. By Michelangelo Buonarroti, Bari 1960
p. 148, app., p. 478, no. 30

Dussler, Luitpold, Die Zeichnungen des Michelangelo: kritischer Katalog, Berlin 1959
figs. 175, 44
pp. 136-37, no. 216
as in part by Michelangelo

Loan exhibition of drawings by old masters from the collection of Dr. & Mrs. Francis Springell, Colnaghi, London, 1959
ill. as frontispiece
cat. no. 24

Drawings by Old Masters, Royal Academy of Arts, London, 1953
cat. no. 48

Drawings by Michelangelo, British Museum, London, 1953
cat. no. 40
Popham and Wilde considered recto and verso by Michelangelo

de Tolnay, Charles, Michelangelo, Princeton 1943-60; 5 vols.
vol. III, no. 104 (recto and verso)
as in part by Michelangelo

Berenson, Bernard, The drawings of the Florentine painters, Chicago and London 1938
vol. II, fig. 791
vol. II, p. 194, no. 1543A (verso), p. 233, no. 1696A (recto)
considered only verso sketches and sonnets by Michelangelo, recto by a pupil

de Tolnay, Charles, 'Eine Sklavenskizze Michelangelos' in 'Münchner Jahrbuch der bildenden Kunst', 1938; NF
ill.
p. 70
only verso sketches and sonnets and recto leg sketch by Michelangelo, recto a pupil

Baumgart, Fritz, 'Die Jugendzeichnungen Michelangelos bis 1506' in 'Marburger Jahrbuch für Kunstwissenschaft', 1937 - pp. 209-62; 10
fig. 36
pp. 249-51

Berenson, Bernard, 'Andrea di Michelangelo e Antonio Mini' in 'Larte', Jul. 1935 - pp. 243-83; 38, 4
vol. III, figs. 664, 665
vol. II, pp. 184-85, no. 1495

Venturi, A., 'Un disegno misconosciuto di Michelangelo' in 'L'Arte', 1928
ill.
pp. 1-2
both recto and verso by Michelangelo ...Less

Inscriptions

Watermark: none.

Inscription: Recto: lower right corner, brown ink, Crozat's number (L.3612): "2". Verso: upper left corner, brown ink, artist’s hand, transcribed and translated by C. de Tolnay (related to Sonnet no. 119 in Michelangelo's Rime): "chosi de[n]tro e di fuor da raggi suoi / nel focho so[n] ch[e] marde l corpo debile / eso" ["Both within and without I am so kindled by your rays that my weak body burns I am..."] and at upper right [related to Sonnet 153 in the Rime]: "chosi cholmo di gratia edamar pieno / unochulto pe[n]sier mi mostra e die [de] / aveder lei e aspetto un altra vol[ta] / qual che fie rivedella in tristo [a]spetto" ["I am so full of kindly feeling and of love a dark thought shows me and allows me to see you and I wait another time to know what our meeting again will be. In sad appearance (or in my sad waiting)"]; right centre edge, red chalk, Jabach’s hand (variant of L.2959): “g C [paraphe]”.

Collector's mark: Recto: lower right corner, stamped in black: Pierre-Jean Mariette (L.1825); lower right corner, written in brown ink: Pierre Crozat (L.3612). Verso: right lower edge, red chalk: probably Everhard Jabach’s paraphe (L.2959) preceded by letters “g” and “C” (though Lugt only has examples of Jabach using letters “f” and “Q”). Mount (now removed and missing, recorded in literature): lower right, stamped in black: Sir Robert Witt (L.2228b).

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