Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Allegory of Winter

Artist:
Pietro Testa (Italian, Lucca 1612–1650 Rome)
Publisher:
Giovanni Giacomo De Rossi (Italian, Rome 1627–1691 Rome)
Date:
1644
Medium:
Etching
Dimensions:
Sheet: 19 11/16 × 27 15/16 in. (50 × 71 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
The Elisha Whittelsey Collection, The Elisha Whittelsey Fund, 1949
Accession Number:
49.95.2322
Not on view
Testa's most concentrated and ambitious etchings are his four allegories of the seasons. Like all his prints, these manifest Testa's intellectual approach to his art, in which he embodied a complex personal philosophy. According to Testa, the human soul is governed by time and change and is imprisoned by the senses and passions. Winter is the last print of the cycle; here, the moon is ascendant at the left, and the mature, virtuous artist—winged, bearded man at the right—is now able to struggle upward, escaping from the figure of Envy below. He is supported by Virtue, who holds a laurel wreath before him.
Inscription: Lettered at bottom right: 'Si stampano in Roma alla Pace per Giovan Jacomo Rossi all insegna di Parigi / Petrus Testa Pinxit et Sculpsit / 1644'
Princes of Liechtenstein; Vendor: P. & D. Colnaghi & Co.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," January 5, 1998–March 8, 1998.

Bartsch XX.229.39; Bellini 28; Cropper 82.iii
Adam von Bartsch Le Peintre graveur. Vienna, 1803.

Paolo Bellini L'opera incisa di Pietro Testa. Vicenza, 1976.

Elizabeth Cropper Pietro Testa, 1612-1650: Prints and Drawings. Philadephia, 1988.



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