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Baldassarre Peruzzi

Baldassarre Peruzzi (Ancaiano, near Siena 1481–1536 Rome)
Holy Family with Saints
Pen and brown ink, brown wash
Inscribed at lower left, in pen and brown ink, titiano (partially effaced)
7 3/8 x 5 5/8 inches (189 x 142 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan, 1910; I, 44
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One of the most creative architects and painters in Rome during the first half of the sixteenth century, Peruzzi arrived there in 1503 from his native Siena. He found employment assisting Raphael on the frescoes of the Vatican Stanze (papal apartments) and on the design and decoration of the palace of the banker Agostino Chigi, the most sophisticated dwelling in Rome at the time.

With a spontaneity of gesture and a sure, light touch, Peruzzi penned rhythmic outlines of form. Then, brushing in areas of wash for shadow, he highlighted the volumes as if illuminated by a directed source of light. A drawing such as this would have been used as the design for a painted altarpiece.

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The programs of The Morgan Library & Museum are made possible with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Background images: Photography by Todd Eberle unless otherwise noted. © 2006 Todd Eberle.