Front: The Judgment of Solomon
Back: Study for the left part of the same composition
Recently appeared on the market as anonymous, this unpublished double-sided drawing with a style reminiscent of that of Donato Creti, was able to benefit from the very recent publication of Marco Riccomini on a disciple still little studied by the great Bolognese master: Domenico Maria Fratta. It is the latter that must return this double-sided sheet with sharp lines underlined on the front by a use as free as effective wash.
The scene depicted is that of Solomon's Judgment supposed to put an end to the quarrel between two women claiming the same child. On the order of the king, the innocent creature is seized by a soldier who is about to cut in half with his sword.
The style developed on the front of the sheet is similar to that in two drawings of the Museum of Rouen, especially for the treatment of soldiers dressed in antique cuirass and wearing identical helmets. In the same way the attitudes of the soldiers are almost identical to those appearing on Rouen's drawings. The taste for the combination of gray ink wash and pen and brown ink is found in a more accomplished leaf preserved at the Glasgow Art Gallery.
The back of the sheet, preparatory to the same composition but executed with the pen alone, shows a remarkable ease and great stylistic proximity with that of his master.
We thank Mr. Marco Riccomini for agreeing to confirm the autograph character of the work.
Comparative Bibliography: Marco Riccomini, Warriors on Stage: Fratta and the Master of Philip, in "Revue du Louvre", 2016-n ° 5, pp. 67-73
V. Abbate and A. Mazza, Il Libro dei Panduri. Disegni di Domenico Fratta Maria collezioni di Palazzo Abatellis, cat. exp., Palermo, 10 November 1994-5 February 1995
Price : on request