Francesco GUARDI (1712-1793) Trophies with... - Lot 196 - Coutau-Bégarie

Lot 196
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Estimation :
3000 - 4000 EUR
Francesco GUARDI (1712-1793) Trophies with... - Lot 196 - Coutau-Bégarie
Francesco GUARDI (1712-1793) Trophies with military attributes Pen and brown ink, brown wash, on paper; 26.4 x 16.3 cm; 27.5 x 19.1 cm, a pair Provenance: Former personal collection of Giancarlo Baroni (†2007), Florence, Private collection, France To the best of our knowledge, this pair of double-sided drawings is a rare example of set designs by the young Francesco Guardi. It is now generally accepted that Francesco began his apprenticeship in the family workshop run by his brother Giovanni Antonio, 14 years his senior. By way of comparison, let's mention the verso of a drawing by Giovanni Antonio1 (Venice, Museo Correr), featuring three trophies, and one of his paintings2 (Venice, Fondazione Cini), illustrating Vulcan, intended for the decor of the Palazzo Suppiei in Venice. This decoration, which also includes Aurora, Neptune and Cibela, was the subject of a debate over attribution between Giovanni Antonio and Francesco; a debate closed by Morassi, who sees it as the work of Giovanni Antonio alone and, dating it after 1750, rules out a collaboration between the brothers and the hypothesis of a four-handed work. The lower part of the painting featuring Vulcan shows a number of military accessories from the divine forge, many of which can be found in our drawings (breastplate, axe, spear, rondache, etc.) These elegant trophies, created with a rather nervous pen, are an interesting testimony to Francesco's early career. Note that the watermark on the paper used, featuring three crescents, is also that of the drawing mentioned earlier in the Museo Correr. On the reverse of this drawing is a sketch for the figure of Saint Vincent Ferrer, which Morassi attributes to Francesco and relates to one of his paintings on the same subject (Private collection, circa 1770-1780). Our warmest thanks go to Professor Bernard Aikema, who examined these drawings in person in 2020, and pointed out another relevant comparative: the decorative cartouche project preserved at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, inv. 1938-57-242. 1. A. Morassi, Guardi, Tutti i Disegni..., Venice 1975, verso p. 90, no. 60, reproduced fig. 56. 2. Idem, Guardi, I Dipinti, Venice 1993, vol. I, p. 323, no. 77, reproduced vol. II, fig. 92 3. Ibid, vol. I, p. 346, no. 205, reproduced vol. II, fig. 223
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