The Garden of Love (left portion), Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, Siegen 1577–1640 Antwerp), Pen, brown ink, gray-green wash over traces of black chalk, touched with indigo, green, yellowish, and white paint on paper

The Garden of Love (left portion)

Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, Siegen 1577–1640 Antwerp)
Workshop of Peter Paul Rubens (Flemish, Siegen 1577–1640 Antwerp)
ca. 1633–35
Pen, brown ink, gray-green wash over traces of black chalk, touched with indigo, green, yellowish, and white paint on paper
18 1/4 x 27 3/4 in. (46.3 x 70.5 cm) (including added strips at left and right)
Credit Line:
Fletcher Fund, 1958
Accession Number:
Not on view
Rubens supervised the engravers who reproduced his paintings throughout his career. Only in the early 1630s did he turn to woodcuts, in close collaboration with Christoffel Jegher. These monumental drawings are models based on a composition also known from Rubens’s painting in the Museo del Prado, Madrid. They were made for Jegher’s woodcuts, which reproduce them in reverse. The initial design in black chalk is by Rubens, while most of the rest of the drawing can be attributed to a workshop assistant. The drawings essentially transform the composition into a frieze, most notably by dividing it into two separate parts, pushing the figures to the foreground and cropping the architecture at the top. This frieze-like adaptation gives the figural groups a wonderful immediacy.
Inscription: Inscribed lower right: Petro Pauwlo Rubbens
On back of mount: J C Robinson / July 18 1983 from Ld. Aylesford coll. (see Lugt suppl. 2141b)
Lower center of mount in ink: 133

Marking: Lower right collector's mark of Sir John Charles Robinson (Lugt 1433)
On mount collector's stamp of Earl of Aylesford (Lugt 58)
Pierre Crozat (French)(Lugt 2951;165 with paraph); Louis Antoine Crozat, Baron de Thiers, Paris (French)(other sheet, given to Mariette); Pierre Jean Mariette (French), his sale, Paris, November 15–January 30, 1775, lot 994both sheets, 979 livres 19 sous to Basan); Jan Jansz Gildemeester, his sale, Amsterdam, September 26, 1814(not in U.S.A. according to Lugt, Rép. 8587; see Exhibition Antwerp: "Omslag N, nr. 1"), florins 700 to Christian Josi; Christian Josi (Dutch); Heneage Finch, 5th Earl of Aylesford (British); his sale, Christie's, London , July 17–18, 1893, £72 to J.C. Robinson; Sir John Charles Robinson (British); his sale, Christie's, London , May 12–14 May, 1902, lot 334, says both drawings "afterwards carried out in a picture now in the Madrid Gallery [sic] (£820 to Thomas Agnew & Sons); Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd.; William Hesketh Lever, 1st Viscount Leverhulme; Lady Lever Art Gallery; Vendor: Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. Vendor: Grands Augustins, Paris , 10 April - 13 May 1741, no. 828 La Coversation gravé en bois par Jegher, sold with three other drawings to Mariette for 231 livres
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Anne Marie Logan, Michiel C. Plomp, Dr. Klaus Albrecht Schröder, Heinz Widauer Peter Paul Rubens. Exh. cat., Albertina, Vienna, Sept. 15 - Dec. 5, 2004 (also see New York, 2005). Dr. Klaus Albrecht Schröder, Heinz Widauer, Graphische Sammlung Albertina, Vienna, 2004, pp. 44, 97, 99, 105, 107, 112, cat. no. 115, pp. 438-443, ill.

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