Mather Brown (American, Boston, Massachusetts 1761–1831 London)
Pen and iron gall ink, ink washes, and graphite on off-white wove paper prepared with yellow washes
9 3/8 x 6 1/2 in. (23.8 x 16.5 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1953
Not on view
Brown’s conception of the glorified Christ in this drawing appears indebted to those in several paintings of the Ascension executed about 1781–82 and 1800 by his teacher, Benjamin West, with whom he studied in London. Brown’s draftsman-ship in pen and ink is reflective of West’s, who derived his style from Italian models. Like West, Brown managed an appealing economy and lyricism of line for the flourish of garments and clouds that augments the triumphal subject. The title of the drawing comes from the inscription at the bottom and appears to paraphrase a passage in the Acts of the Apostles (1.11): “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.”.
Signature: [at lower right in brown ink]: Mather Brown
Inscription: [along bottom edge in brown ink]: In like manner shall he descend