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Prince Albert used photography to document exhibitions and works of art

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

A nude child 1858

Albumen print? | RCIN 2864248

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A photograph of a drawing depicting a child now in the Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice (inv. no. 41 recto). This drawing features on the verso a portrait of Pietro d'Abono (see RCIN 854633 for a photograph of the verso). Annotated on the verso.

The Gallerie dell'Accademia (see Bibliographic References) noted that the drawing has been re-painted by a later artist over a graphite line that, seen using the infrared imaging techniques, appears to be from the 16th century. This child is older than the putti usually depicted during the 16th century and his pose is reminiscent of allegories of the rivers. Fischel thought that the model was to be found in Perugino's figures; two drawings by Girolamo Genga (now in Besancon, inv. nos. 1886 and 1887) feature similar studies of youthful boys.

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 854270) 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)

    Associated with Pietro Perugino (Città della Pieve c. 1450-Fontignano 1523) (artist)

    Attributed to Florence : Alinari (photographer)

  • Acquired by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert

  • Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
    Subject(s)
    • People
      • Putti
  • Bibliographic reference(s)

    Gallerie dell' Accademia di Venezia : catalogo dei disegni antichi. v. S. Ferino Pagden, Disegni Umbri (1984), pp. 73-74, no. 20 (for the drawing); pp. 13-31 (for the sketchbook)