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Exhibitions and records of works of art

Prince Albert recognised the importance of photography to record and document notable exhibitions and works of art


A kneeling man


Albumen print? | RCIN 2864276

A photograph of a drawing depicting a kneeling man standing now in the Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice (inv. no. 88 verso). This drawing is on the verso of a depiction of acanthus leaves (see RCIN 854193  for a photograph of the recto).

The Gallerie dell'Accademia (see Bibliographic References) catalogue the figure of the kneeling man as a priest, that Morelli and Kahl believed to be close to examples by Bernardino Pinturicchio. This figure – common in depictions executed in Umbria at the time – has been analysed using the infrared imaging techniques: this process revelead 'pentimenti' (alterations in the drawing) for the head and neck of the figure. Furthermore, the head shows pricked holes and charcoal: it seems likely that the draughtsman executed the drawing free-hand and then used the pricked holes to tranfer the head of the priest from the original model.

This drawing is part of the so-called "Libretto di Raffaello" or "Libretto Veneziano", 53 sheets that used to be mounted in a volume. After complicated negotiations, the sketchbook was bought by the museum in the 1820s, after the death of Giuseppe Bossi, who was its previous owner. A number of scholars debated the author of the drawings (with many names proposed, such as Pinturicchio, Antonio da Viterbo, Eusebio del Giorgio, Girolamo Genga) and their date. In 1984, the Gallerie dell'Accademia catalogued the drawings as by an artist contemporary to Raphael, whose juvenile works he copied in this sketchbook (see Bibliographic References).

A copy of this photograph (RCIN 854268) can be found in the Prince Consort's Raphael Collection, portfolio 47 (970607)

  • Creator(s)

    After a work copying Raphael (Urbino 1483-Rome 1520) (artist)

    Attributed to Florence : Alinari (photographer)

  • Acquired by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

  • Subject(s)
    • Religion & Theology
      • Religions and faiths
        • Christianity
          • Christian church in general
            • Church government. Ecclesiastical organization
              • Clergy
                • Priests and clergy in general. Secular clergy
    Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
  • Bibliographic reference(s)

    Gallerie dell' Accademia di Venezia : catalogo dei disegni antichi. v.
    S. Ferino Pagden, Disegni Umbri (1984), pp. 77-78, no. 22 (for the drawing); pp. 13-31 (for the sketchbook)