Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Apollo Driving the Chariot of the Rising Sun.

Artist:
Luca Cambiaso (Italian, Moneglia 1527–1585 Madrid)
Date:
1527–85
Medium:
Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, over black chalk; squared in red chalk
Dimensions:
9 9/16 x 14in. (24.3 x 35.5cm)
Classification:
Drawings
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1962
Accession Number:
62.168
Not on view
This composition drawing depicts Apollo, god of the sun, driving the chariot of dawn seen in a relatively frontal view. The sheet is inscribed "sole oriente," to indicate the rising of the sun on the east. Since the ink of the inscription appears to be of the same hue as the darkest passages in the outlines of the drawing, this could be an iconographic inscription by the artist himself. A companion drawing, representing the chariot of Apollo (erroneously identified as the chariot of Phaeton), but seen in a view from behind to indicate the setting sun on the west, is inscribed in a complementary manner, "sole cadente." It sold at Sotheby's, London on May 21, 1963, lot 131. A copy of the "sole cadente" composition, incorrectly attributed to Antonio Tempesta, is in the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris (Ancien fonds no. EBA 384). That design derives from an original by Luca Cambiaso as well.
To judge from both its iconograph and its foreshortening, this composition was probably preparatory for a fresco on the ceiling of a salone in a palace.The squaring grid in red chalk over the figural drawing suggests a relatively monumental scale. The scenes thus likely refer to the sun god Apollo, and the moon goddess, Diana, driving their chariot across the skies. Cambiaso's associate Giovanni Battista Castello, il Bergamasco, frescoed the subject about 1552 on the walls of he Villa Giustiniani Cambiaso, Genoa.
(Carmen C. Bambach, 2014)
Inscription: The sheet is inscribed possibly by the artist in pen and brown ink along lower border, toward center: "sole oriente."
Prosper Henry Lankrink (Flemish, Antwerp 1628–1692 London); Mark Oliver; R. E. A. Wilson, London (according to Virch); Walter C. Baker (American, 1893–1971)
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Genoa: Drawings and Prints, 1530-1800," April 23, 1996–July 10, 1996.

Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas at Austin. "Luca Cambiaso, 1527-1585," September 15, 2006–January 14, 2007.

Palazzo Ducale, Genoa. "Luca Cambiaso, 1527-1585," February 23, 2007–July 1, 2007.

Jacob Bean, Lawrence Turčić 15th and 16th Century Italian Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1982, pp. 52-53, no. 38, ill.

Carmen Bambach, Nadine Orenstein, William M. Griswold, Allegra Pesenti Genoa: Drawings and Prints, 1530-1800 Exh. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1996, p. 24, no. 16 (entry by Carmen C. Bambach).

Jonathan Bober, Piero Boccardo, Franco Boggero, Clario Di Fabio, Lauro Magnani Luca Cambiaso 1527-1585. Exh. cat., Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, and Palazzo Ducale, Genoa. Cinisello Balsamo (Milan), 2006, pp. 360-61, no. 74 (entry by Jonathan Bober).



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