Jacob Jordaens

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Jacob Jordaens
Allegory of Victory
ca. 1660-1665
Red and black chalks, watercolor and opaque watercolor, over charcoal on laid paper.
10 9/16 x 16 5/8 inches (269 x 422 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
III, 171
Traces of computations at lower right margin, probably by the artist, in red chalk, "26 / 156".
Sir Charles Greville (1763-1836), English army officer (Lugt 549); George Guy, fourth Earl of Warwick (Lugt 2600); his sale, London, Christie's, 20-21 May 1896, possibly one of three in lot 193 ("Jordaens, Study of a Satyr...[not Cat. no. 283] and two others"; to Fairfax Murray for £3.10.0); Charles Fairfax Murray (1849-1919), London and Florence; from whom purchased through Galerie Alexandre Imbert, Rome, in 1909 by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), New York (no mark; see Lugt 1509); his son, J. P. Morgan, Jr. (1867-1943), New York.

Tuinen, Ilona van. Power and Grace : Drawings by Rubens, Van Dyck, and Jordaens. New York : Morgan Library & Museum, 2018, no. 15 (repr.)
Collection J. Pierpont Morgan : Drawings by the Old Masters Formed by C. Fairfax Murray. London : Privately printed, 1905-1912, III, 171.
Stampfle, Felice, with the assistance of Ruth S. Kraemer and Jane Shoaf Turner. Netherlandish Drawings of the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries and Flemish Drawings of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries in the Pierpont Morgan Library. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1991, p. 131, no. 285, repr.


Watermark: Grapes (Heawood 2097). Watermark, beta radiograph. Grapes. 144468wm_III171_Jordaens_WM_beta.jpg
The complicated composition probably illustrates the victory of Minerva, goddess of wisdom-- identifiable by her shield with the head of Medusa--over the helmeted god of war, Mars, to her left, and his combative follower beneath her foot. As a result, Mercury (the god of commerce, at far right), is cheerful and Chronos (the personification of time, with his hourglass and scythe) presents laurels to Minerva: periods of peace bring about prosperity and well-being. No related painting is known, but Jordaens may have used the composition for one of the eleven paintings, of which only two survive, that he executed around 1665 for the ceiling of the Guild of St. Luke, temple of the arts in Antwerp. Indeed, if commerce is not protected from war, the arts cannot flourish. -- Exhibition Label, from "Power and Grace: Drawings by Rubens, Van Dyck, and Jordaens"

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