Bartolomé Esteban Murillo

Download image: 
Bartolomé Esteban Murillo
St. Felix of Cantalice Holding the Christ Child
ca. 1668-69
Pen and brown ink and wash, lead white opaque watercolor, over black chalk, on laid paper.
13 x 9 1/8 inches (330 x 232 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
I, 110

Inscribed at lower right, in pen and brown ink, "Bartolome Murillo fet".

G.W. Reid (Lugt 1210); 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.

Collection J. Pierpont Morgan : Drawings by the Old Masters Formed by C. Fairfax Murray. London : Privately printed, 1905-1912, I, 110.


A study after the painting in the Museo Provincial de Bellas Artes, Seville.
Murillo was Seville's most successful artist during the seventeenth century. His largest commission was the pictorial decoration for the chapel of the Capuchinos de Sevilla. This drawing is a preparatory study for a painting of St. Felix of Cantalice, formerly on a side altar of that church. Felix was a member and patron of the Capuchins, an independent order of Franciscans; he was visited by the Virgin and Child as a reward for his charitable work. In this drawing, the artist explored the configuration of the kneeling saint and squirming Christ child, while the bread and setting are sparingly executed. --Exhibition Label, from "Visions and Nightmares: Four Centuries of Spanish Drawings"

Associated names: 

Reid, George William, 1819-1887, former owner.
Murray, Charles Fairfax, 1849-1919, former owner.
Morgan, J. Pierpont (John Pierpont), 1837-1913, former owner.