Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Saint Paul of Thebes tempted by a demon, after Magnasco

Bartolommeo Gazalis (Italian, born Genoa, active Milan, 1720–30)
After Alessandro Magnasco (Italian, Genoa 1667–1749 Genoa)
ca. 1720–30
Sheet: 12 7/8 × 8 1/4 in. (32.7 × 21 cm)
Credit Line:
A. Hyatt Mayor Purchase Fund, Marjorie Phelps Starr Bequest, 2015
Accession Number:
Not on view
Born around 227 in the Thebaid region of Egypt, Paul of Thebes is regarded as the first Christian hermit. Here he is shown partly naked, meditating on a cross, and seated outdoors, emphasizing his poverty and commitment to spiritual life. The skull in the lower left corner is a reminder of the transience of earthly existence. In the upper section, a demon in the guise of a sensuous woman attempts to distract him from his devotion. The saint’s elon-gated figure and the loose and dense style of etching reflect his familiarity with the prints of Giovanni Bene-detto Castiglione

Gazalis made only two etchings, both based on designs by Magnasco. The only other known impression of this print is the Civica Raccolta Bertarelli in Milan.
Inscription: Lettered along bottom: in centre 'PAVLVS' to the left 'Alexander Magnascus in.' to the right 'Gazalis sculp.' In pen and ink lower left ‘no. 2’
Vendor: Nicolaas Teeuwisse (Dutch, active Berlin)
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection".

Heller/Andresen 1870, no.1.
Handbuch für Kupferstichsammler. Leipzig, 1870, cat. no. 1, I, 557.

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