Giovanni Battista Piranesi

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Giovanni Battista Piranesi
Sketches of Figure and Vases
ca. 1774-1778
Pen and brown ink on paper.
6 x 10 inches (152 x 254 mm)
Bequest of Junius S. Morgan and gift of Henry S. Morgan.

The sketch of figures and vases is one of a number of late drawings -- see also 1966.11:18 and 1966.11:19 -- that show vases and other objects not as isolated items, as in most sketches related to Piranesi's "Vasi, Candelabra...," but rather as elements in rough compositional sketches.
The verso has a fragmentary list of Piranesi publications in a clerical hand (see Stampfle catalogue entry cited below for a transcription). The latest of the works listed there is Piranesi's "Colonna Triana" in book form, which can be dated to 1774, giving a likely date for the list. The list of publications also includes a "Vasi, e candelabri, in one volume," which was surely an early version of what became the "Vasi, Candelabri, Cippi..." published in 1778.
On same mat as 1966.11:119.


Inscribed at right, in pen and brown ink, "Vaso Villa Medici".

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.
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.


Stampfle, Felice. Giovanni Battista Piranesi, Drawings in the Pierpont Morgan Library. New York : Dover, 1978, no. 116, repr.