Wednesday 16 November 2022

Lot 29

Salvator Rosa,   Italian 1615-1673-   Study of a standing man;  

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Lot 29

Salvator Rosa,
Italian 1615-1673-
Study of a standing man;

Price Realised: £3,640

Estimate: £3,000 - £5,000

Price realised is hammer price plus fees (30% Buyers Premium inclusive of VAT).

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Lot 29


Salvator Rosa,


Italian 1615-1673-


Study of a standing man;


black chalk, pen and brown ink and wash on laid paper, 14 x 7.7 cm.


Provenance: John Isaacs.; Peter Palumbo.; Sale, Sotheby's, London, 12 March 1963, lot 139B.; Anon. sale, Sotheby's, London, 13 December 1973, lot 38.; with Thomas Agnew & Sons, London, 1974 [no.38365].; Private Collection, UK, since 1975.; By descent.


Exhibited: London, Thomas Agnew & Sons, 'Master Drawings and Prints', March-April 1974, no.4.


Literature: M. Mahoney,The Drawings of Salvator Rosa, New York and London, 1977, no.46.4 (illustrated), 'A man turned to the left resting his right arm on a high block and holding a staff in his left hand'.


Note: The present drawing relates to Rosa's preliminary studies for his set of 62 etchings of genre and military subjects entitled 'Figurine' - a group of 62 etchings of soldiers, peasants and other figures, depicted either individually or in groups of two, three or more - on which he was working from 1656 to 1657. It has been suggested that, apart from helping to spread Rosas fame, these 'Figurine' etchings may also have served to rebut claims, made by the artists critics, that he was merely a landscape painter without the ability to depict figures. As Richard Wallace has noted, Rosa was very touchy about his reputation as a figure painter...With the Figurine he undoubtedly meant to show everyone, including his detractors...that he could master the human figure in an almost infinite variety of poses and expressive states. Often acquired as a complete set of prints and bound into albums, Rosas 'Figurine' etchings remained popular with collectors well into the 18th century.


This study was probably drawn from life on the same scale as the etchings in preparation for Bartsch 43. In the finished etching the soldier wears a helmet and leans on his lance which he carries in his right hand. The essential pose of the body remains the same. Rosas individual studies for the Figurine are characteristic of his graphic style in general. They are all drawn with swift pen strokes and feather-light touches of wash and they all display the same economy of line from which they derive their spontaneity and vigour. Rosas inspiration for the Figurine stems from the etched work of Jacques Callot (1592-1635) and Stefano della Bella (1610-1664). The figures, many of whom are soldiers, are frequently turned away from the spectator, as in this drawing, as if secretly brooding some plot or conspiracy. As Dr Mahoney pointed out in the Hayward Gallerys 1973 Salvator Rosa Exhibition Catalogue, the Figurine gave Rosa the opportunity to express several of his most important artistic attitudes, his most obsessive desire to be known as a master of the human figure in all of its aspects… and his wish to display his originality of invention, his capriccio.

Buyer's Premium

The buyer shall pay the hammer price together with a premium thereon of 26% up to £20,000 (31.2% inclusive of VAT), 25% from £20,001 - £500,000 (30% inclusive of VAT), 20% from £500,001 thereafter (24% inclusive of VAT). The premium price is subject to VAT at the standard rate.

VAT is not charged on the hammer price unless it is stated that there is 'VAT applicable on the hammer price at the end of the description. Buyer's premium is subject to VAT.

Qualifying living artists and the descendants of artists deceased within the last 70 years are entitled to receive a re-sale royalty each time their work is bought through an auction house or art market professional.

It applies to lots with hammer value over €1,000 as follows:
0 to €50,000 - 4%, €50,000.01 to €200,000 - 3%
€200,000.01 to €350,000 - 1%,
€350,000.01 to €500,000 - 0.5%
Exceeding €500,000 - 0.25%
ARR is capped at €12,500

Please note ARR is calculated in euros. Auctioneers will apply current exchange rates.

Export of goods

Buyers intending to export goods should ascertain whether an export licence is required before bidding. Export licences are issued by Arts Council England and application forms can be obtained from its Export Licensing Unit. Details can be found on the ACE website or by phoning ACE on 020 7973 5188. The need for import licences varies from country to country and you should acquaint yourself with all relevant local requirements and provisions before bidding. The refusal of any such licences shall not permit the cancelling of any sale nor allow any delay in making full payment for the lot.

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