German School

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German School
15th century
Drapery Study. Verso (by another hand): Martyrdom of St. Matthew
ca. 1480, verso: ca. 1430-1500
Red and white opaque watercolor, with black watercolor over black chalk; verso: pen and black ink. Background color may be later addition.
8 1/16 x 5 5/8 inches (206 x 144 mm)
Thaw Collection.
1970.14

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Inscription: 

Inscribed on verso, at lower right, in brown ink, "MS / 1495".

Provenance: 
Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Victor Thaw, New York.
Bibliography: 

The Morgan Library & Museum, New York, NY, "Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings from the Thaw Collection", 2017. Exh. cat., no. 152, repr.
Stampfle, Felice, and Cara D. Denison. Drawings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene V. Thaw. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1975, no. 1, repr. (Franco-Flemish School, 15th century) (also in Thaw III, no. 1)
Denison, Cara D. et al. The Thaw Collection : Master Drawings and New Acquisitions. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1994, no. 1.
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. 3, no. 2, repr.
Ryskamp, Charles, ed. Sixteenth Report to the Fellows of the Pierpont Morgan Library, 1969-1971. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1973, p. 87-88 (as Franco-Flemish School?, 15th cent.)
100 Master drawings from the Morgan Library & Museum. München : Hirmer, 2008, no. 40, repr. [Guido Messling]

Notes: 

Watermark: none.
This sophisticated drawing served to study the disposition of light and shade over the carefully arranged folds of a cloth, which was probably made with soft rags dipped in plaster and draped over a clay figure. The drawing could then serve as a model for an artist depicting the hands of a priest receiving the Christ child, or even those of the Virgin in a Presentation of Christ in the Temple. -- Exhibition Label, from "Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings from the Thaw Collection"

Associated names: 

Thaw, Eugene Victor, former owner.
Thaw, Clare, former owner.

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