Early 17th century Northern School
( 1600 - 1650)
The Martyrdom of Saint Paul
Inscribed Callot / 1592 + 1635 / martyre de St. Pa- / -t Paul on the backing board
75 x 96 mm. (3 x 3 3/4 in.)
The artist responsible for this pair of Biblical scenes must have been inspired by the paintings of Adam Elsheimer (1578-1610), and in particular the small-scale religious scenes on copper painted by the artist in the first decade of the 17th century in Rome. Elsheimer’s small paintings, often crowded with figures and full of detail, were highly influential on the succeeding generation of Dutch, Flemish and German artists working in Rome. It is likely, therefore, that the author of the present pair of gouaches, each characterized by a dynamic composition and highly refined technique, may be found among the Northern artists active in Rome in the first quarter of the 17th century.