(Genoa or Rome 1512 - Rocca Contrada 1600)
A Rocky Outcrop with Trees
210 x 285 mm. (8 1/4 x 11 1/4 in.)
The present sheet, in exceptional condition, was once part of an album of drawings by Gherardo Cibo, all on deep blue paper, which was sold at auction on London in 1960. Other drawings from the album, now known as the A. Bruce Thompson or San Quirico album, are today in the collections of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the British Museum in London, the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Los Angeles Country Museum of Art, the Morgan Library and Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Princeton University Art Museum and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., as well as in several private collections.
Among stylistically comparable drawings on blue paper by Cibo, all from the same album as the present sheet, is a hilly landscape in the Princeton University Art Museum and a Hilly Landscape with Ships in the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.
As a recent scholar has noted, ‘That Cibo would eventually be regarded as one of the most delightful and original Italian landscapists of the sixteenth century is an unexpected reward for this gentil’ huomo who never received classical training as an artist and who may well have regarded his activities as a landscape draftsman as little more than a pleasurable distraction.’ The Cibo scholar Lucia Tongiorgi Tomasi adds, ‘Profound artistic sensibility, scientific knowledge and technical skill characterise the work of this notable sixteenth-century artist...Gherardo Cibo could also be considered as the very embodiment of that fascinating Renaissance ideal – the ‘artist-scientist-dilettante’. He was a precocious interpreter of the new and highly successful formula which was to unite the Italian and Flemish pictorial traditions.’
Possibly Daniel Gardner, London
A. Bruce Thompson
Anonymous sale (‘The Property of a Gentleman’), London, Sotheby’s, 27 April 1960, part of lots 1-12 [possibly lot 8] (all as Italo-Flemish School, XVIth Century)
Werner and Helene Muensterberger, New York, in 1969
Richard L. Feigen and Co., New York.