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Studies of antique sculptures
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Studies of antique sculptures

Giovanni Angelo Montorsoli (1507-1563)

Pen and ink (brown) on paper

Width: 25.6 cm; Height: 40.8 cm;

Acquisition (source, method, date)
Witt, Robert Clermont (Sir); bequest; 1952
D.1952.RW.1160

About this work
The sculptor Montorsoli, one of Michelangelo’s assistants in Florence, was appointed by Pope Clement VII in 1532 to restore the Vatican’s growing collection of antique statues, including the famous Laocoon group. He probably sketched this sheet from Classical sculpture around that time. It shows a leg of a statue of Mercury, identified by the short herald’s staff entwined by two serpents (known as a caduceus), and the Venus Seated. The pen strokes, which seem to mimic chisel marks, carefully model the body and the drapery of Venus, lending three-dimensionality and a sculptural quality to the figures. The inscriptions surrounding the figures were added later. (Permanent collection label)



This work is not on display
While we make every effort to ensure this information is correct, displays are subject to last-minute changes.



Copyright: © The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London

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