Giovanni Battista Piranesi

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Giovanni Battista Piranesi
Sketches of Balustrade, Column, and Garland. Verso: Sketches of Balustrade and Cornucopia
ca. 1775-1778
Pen and brown ink on paper; verso: pen and brown ink.
5 x 10 1/4 inches (127 x 260 mm)
Bequest of Junius S. Morgan and gift of Henry S. Morgan.

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Inscribed at left, in pen and brown ink, "giocoliere"; at right, "piante"; numbered at lower center, in graphite, "33"; inscribed on verso, in pen and brown ink, "due cornucopi".
Watermark: Six-pointed star inside circle, surmounted by a cross, centered on chain line, fragment.

Mrs. J.P. Morgan, New York; by descent to her sons Junius S. Morgan, Princeton and Paris (no mark, see Lugt 1536) and Henry S. Morgan, New York.

Stampfle, Felice. Giovanni Battista Piranesi, Drawings in the Pierpont Morgan Library. New York : Dover, 1978, no. 119.


One of a series of late drawings by Piranesi showing vases and other decorative objects not as isolated design studies, but rather set within compositions - in this example perhaps in a garden, given the indication of "piante" (plants); see also 1966.11:116 and 1966.11:118. The function of these drawings is unclear, for they do not relate to any of Piranesi's printed works.
On same mat as 1966.11:116.

Associated names: 

Morgan, Jane Norton, 1868-1925, former owner.
Morgan, Junius Spencer, 1892-1960, former owner.
Morgan, Henry S. (Henry Sturgis), 1900-1982, former owner.