Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Finding the bodies of Saints Peter and Paul

Artist:
Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione (Il Grechetto) (Italian, Genoa 1609–1664 Mantua)
Date:
1645–51
Medium:
Etching
Dimensions:
Sheet: 11 13/16 × 8 1/8 in. (30 × 20.7 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
Gift of Bertina Suida Manning and Robert L. Manning, 1979
Accession Number:
1979.517
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 690
Many of Castiglione’s works address the transience of earthly endeavors, death, and decay. One of the most innovative printmakers of his time, he was strongly influenced by Rembrandt’s prints and their tenebrism (from tenebroso, suggesting darkness). He even sought out religious subjects that would be enhanced by a gloomy setting, such as this example, which depicts the vault on the Appian Way outside Rome where the bodies of the two martyred saints were hidden. Here, a group of men stumble into the vault, almost clinging to one another in fear. In the lower left, we see a headless Saint Paul and Saint Peter, still clutching his keys, illuminated by the light of a single torch.
Inscription: Inscribed in plate along bottom: "CASTIGLIONE GENOVESE / Inve."
Donor: Bertina Suida Manning Donor: Robert L. Manning
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," May 9, 2017–August 7, 2017.

Bartsch XXI.17.14 (only state); TIB Comment.4602.014; Belllini 1982, no.57
Adam von Bartsch Le Peintre graveur. Vienna, 1803.

TIB The Illustrated Bartsch - Commentary Volumes. 1978–.

Paolo Bellini L'opera incisa di Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione Exh. cat., Castello Sforzesco, Civiche Raccolte Achille Bertarelli, Milano. Civica raccolta delle stampe A. Bertarelli, Milan, 1982.



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