Titian Drawings in Ancona

September 27th, 2009 § 0 comments

Here I’m posting some photographs I took of the back of Titian’s 1520 painting “Madonna and Child with Saints Francis and Alvise with the Donor Alvise Gozzi” from Ancona’s picture gallery. While the photographs aren’t great, I thought I’d put them up because I haven’t seen any others on the web. The black chalk drawings are on the reinforcing panels behind the picutre panel and have been known since 1948 – 51, when Giovanni Urbani restored the picture.
Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Madonna and Child with Saints Francis and Alvise with the donor Alvise Gozzi | Oil on Panel | 320 x 260 cm. | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Madonna and Child with Saints Francis and Alvise with the Donor Alvise Gozzi | Oil on Panel | 320 x 206 cm. | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Madonna and Child with Saints Francis and Alvise and the Donor Alvise Gozzi | Black Chalk on Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Madonna and Child with Saints Francis and Alvise and the Donor Alvise Gozzi | Black Chalk on Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

Titian | Detail of Back of Ancona Altarpiece | Black Chalk on Wood Panel | 1520 | Pinacoteca | Ancona

The most worked up head is probably a study for the Christ Child, and not one of the flying putti, because of the hint of halo. Its direction differs from both Christ’s and the putti heads. The other heads, usually in profile, are more doodle caricatures. Harold Wethey thought that the Christ Child’s head and the head of a woman should be considered autograph and the others school. Bert Meijer, with slight reservation, thought the drawings all by Titian. This seems more sensible. Great masters shouldn’t be precluded from the great fun of doodling.

References –

Giovanni Urbani, “Schede di restauro,” Bollettino dell’Istituto Centrale di Restauro, Nos. 9 – 10, 1952, pp. 61 -79.

Bert W. Meijer, “Titian Sketches on Panel and Canvas,” Master Drawings, Vol. 19, No. 3 (Autumn 1981), pp. 276 – 353.

Harold E. Wethey, “Titian’s Drawing of a Christ Child in Ancona,” Burlington Magazine, Vol. 124, No. 950 (May, 1982), pp. 294 – 290.

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