Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Design for a Casket with the Gonzaga Eagle

Artist:
Giulio Romano (Italian, Rome 1499?–1546 Mantua)
Date:
ca. 1527–46
Medium:
Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, highlighted with traces of white gouache, over black chalk
Dimensions:
Overall: 4 9/16 x 6 15/16in. (11.6 x 17.7cm) Sheet: 4 × 6 9/16 in. (10.1 × 16.7 cm) [cropped silhouette]
Classifications:
Drawings, Ornament & Architecture
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1965
Accession Number:
65.125.3
Not on view
This beautiful design for a casket is another example of Giulio Romano’s multifarious designs at the court of the Gonzaga in Mantua. It was probably meant as a presentation drawing and contains various options which had to be decided on before its execution. Most notably, Giulio presented two different ways of decorating the space between the Gonzaga eagle and the lion’s feet. On the left we see an acanthus scroll while on the right he has rendered a palm leaf. Similarly, the decorative frieze around the top of the lid can be executed fluted, or with a pattern of acanthus leafs. The detail with which the artist executed the drawing is incredible and can be most clearly noted in the plant stem which encircles the body and right wing of the eagle.
Inscription: Annotated in pen and brown ink at lower center of old mount, "Iulio Romano".
Henri Baderou, Paris
Hunter College Art Galleries, New York. "Giulio Romano, Master Designer (1499-1546)," September 14, 1999–November 24, 1999.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Living in Style: Five Centuries of Interior Design from the Collection of Drawings and Prints," June 17, 2013–September 9, 2013.

Jacob Bean, Lawrence Turčić 15th and 16th Century Italian Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1982, p. 110, no. 102.

Ernst H. Gombrich, Manfredo Tafuri, Sylvia Ferino-Pagden et al. Giulio Romano. Exh. cat., Palazzo Te and Palazzo Ducale, Mantua. Mantua, 1989, p. 460, ill.

Disegno: Italian Renaissance Drawings and Designs for the Decorative Arts. Exh. cat., Cooper Hewitt Design Museum, September 1 - November 12. Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution, New York, 1997, ill.

Janet Cox-Rearick Giulio Romano: Master Designer. Exh. cat., The Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Art Gallery, and Hunter College of the City of New York. New York, 1999, pp. 60-61, no. 10 (entry by Margaret Schwartz).

Valery Taylor "Giulio Romano's Silverware Designs." Giulio Romano e l'arte del Cinquecento. Ed. by Ugo Bazzotti, Modena, 2014, p. 143 (with a possible identification in the Gonzaga inventory of 1540-42 as " no. 5219: the body with a frieze of griffons and verdure with the ducal arms").



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