Drawn with awesome rapidity and a dazzling economy of means, this sheet of sketches attests to Veronese's extraordinary powers of invention as a storyteller. Here, he explored a variety of solutions to motifs that he later used in four canvases of the "Allegories of Love" painted around 1575 (National Gallery, London). Veronese may have studied the figures from sketchy clay models, as suggested by the frequency with which he drew the same figures from different angles. To judge from the final paintings, it is clear that he shuffled figures, poses, and points of view from scene to scene but made use of all the design elements in this sheet.
On the right, immediately below the studies for "Happy Union", appear two sketches of an open keyboard instrument; above, it is seen from the front, below, it is seen from the side, played by a winged putto. This putto musician appears at lower left in the painting traditionally called "Infidelity." This composition is rapidly sketched two-thirds of the way down the sheet at the right. Here there are a number of differences between drawing and painting, including the fact that the putto musician at the left of this sketch appears in back view.
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verso: detail of Sagredo inventory number
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Inscription: Faint annotations in black chalk above figure of standing warrior at lower left, G. . . E / F [?]; annotated at lower margin in pen and a brown ink different from that of the drawing: "Carlito C." Verso annotated in graphite, in modern hand, at upper centre: "Veronese (?)" and below, at lower right, in pen and brown ink, the mark associated with the Sagredo Collection in Venice: "C. C. Nº. 8." On slip of paper attached to the backing sheet, an illegible inscription in pen and brown ink similar to but larger than Lugt 2103a.
Possibly Zaccaria Sagredo (Italian)(see inscription); Comtesse de Noyant(according to Sotheby Parke Bernet catalogue); Sotheby Parke Bernet, May 21, 1975, lot 9, repr.; Vendor: Sotheby's, Los Angeles
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings Recently Acquired, 1972–75," October 1, 1975–January 4, 1976.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions 1965–1975," December 6, 1975–March 23, 1976.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," October 6, 1997–January 4, 1998.
Palazzo della Gran Guardia, Verona. "Paolo Veronese: l'illusione della realtà," July 5, 2014–October 5, 2014.
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art [The Met Breuer]. "Kerry James Marshall Selects: Works from The Metropolitan Museum of Art," October 25, 2016–January 29, 2017.
Jacob Bean European Drawings Recently Acquired, 1972–1975. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1975, no. 32, ill.
Jean-Luc Bordeaux "A Sheet of Studies for Veronese's Four Allegories of Love" Burlington Magazine. vol. 117, no. 870, September 1975, pp. 600-603, fig. 1.
"Departmental Accessions: Drawings." in Annual Report of the Trustees of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, July 1, 1974 - June 30, 1975. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, no. 105, New York, 1975, p. 49, ill.
Jacob Bean "Drawings." The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1965-1975. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975, p. 64, repr. (entry by Jacob Bean).
Jacob Bean Patterns of Collecting: Selected Acquisitions, 1965-1975. Explanatory texts accompanying an exhibition. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975, p. 64, repr. (entry by Jacob Bean).
Terisio Pignatti Veronese. 2 vols., Venice, 1976, vol. 1, pp. 145-146, vol. 2, pl. 551, nos. 233, 236.
Jacob Bean, Lawrence Turčić 15th and 16th Century Italian Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1982, pp. 154-56, no. 150.
Richard Cocke Veronese's Drawings with a Catalogue Raisonné. Ithaca, 1984, no. 78.
W. R. Rearick, National Gallery of Art The Art of Paolo Veronese, 1528–1588. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1988, p. 125, no. 62 (dates it to 1575-76).
Xavier Salomon "New Evidence for the Original Arrangement of Paolo Veronese's Allegories of Love." Master Drawings. no. 1, vol. 51, 2012, pp. 60, 62, note 18, figs. 3-4, ill.
Tomas Nichols "Exhibition Review: Veronese, London and Venice" The Burlington Magazine, CLVI, October 2014. 2014, pp. 683-85, fig. 53 (recto only repr.).
Xavier Salomon Veronese 1528-1588 Catalogue of the exhibition "Veronese: Magnificence in Renaissance Venice", The National Gallery, London (March 19 - June 15, 2014). London, 2014, p. 190, fig. 140 (recto only repr.).
Paola Marini, Bernard Aikema Paolo Veronese. L'illusione della realtà. Exh. cat. Palazzo della Gran Guardia, Verona. Milan, 2014, pp. 218-25, no. 4.1e (entry by Bernard Aikema).
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