When Pierpont Morgan purchased this bust from Canessa in 1909, it was believed to be the work of Michelangelo. It is actually a cast after a marble bust of a weeping child by the Dutch sculptor Hendrick de Keyser (1565-1621), now in the Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen. The marble was in the Danish Kunstkammeret by 1775 and became part of the Statens Museum collection in 1905, so it is assumed that this cast might date to the late 17th or 18th century. The Morgan's bust came from the collection of the collector-dealer Michele Lazzaroni. Recent scholarship has revealed the extent to which Lazzaroni's stock consisted of forgeries and creative restorations.
Bust of a Crying Child
After Hendrik de Keyser
Italy, late 17th century
bust: 10 1/4 x 8 5/8 x 7 7/8 inches (260 x 220 x 200 mm); base: 7 1/8 x 6 7/8 inches (180 x 175 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan, 1909.
Baron Michele Lazzaroni, Paris; purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan through C. and E. Canessa, Paris, 1909.