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Scalinata della Trinità dei Monti

Giovanni Paolo Panini (Italian, Piacenza 1691–1765 Rome)

ca. 1756–58
Pen and black ink, brush and gray wash, watercolor, over graphite
13-11/16 x 11-9/16 in. (34.8 x 29.3 cm)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1971
Accession Number:
  • Description

    This watercolor seems to have been intended as an artistic end in itself, since it is not a study for a known painting. Panini did use the composition, however, in a series of pairs of paintings executed between 1756 and 1758, representing picture galleries crowded with many views of either ancient or modern Rome. In the "Roma Moderna" of the first pair, which was commissioned by the Duke of Choiseul and is now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Scalinata is seen from the same perspective as in this drawing. The "Roma Moderna" of the second pair, which is also in the Metropolitan Museum (52.63.2), includes the Scalinata as well, on the floor to the left of the Duke, just as it is in the Boston painting. In the third set, now in the Musée du Louvre, Paris, the Scalinata is high on the wall to the right.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Annotated in pen and brown ink on verso, "g. p. panini," and "No 110."

    Marking: Collector's mark of Marquis de Lagoy, Aix stamped in black on recto, lower center (Lugt 1710).

  • Provenance

    Jacques-Laure Le Tonnelier de Breteuil (French); His saleJanuary 16-25, 1786, no. 76; Jean-Baptiste-Pierre Lebrun ; His saleMarch 11-30, 1791, no. 260; Marquis de Lagoy (French, 1764–1829); Lagoy Collection Inventory, No. 136; Maldwin Drummond(according to Christie's); Christie's, LondonJune 23, 1970, no. 152, repr.; Hans M. Calmann

  • Exhibition History

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Artists in Rome in the 18th Century: Drawings and Prints," February 28, 1978–May 7, 1978.

    Yale Center for British Art, Yale University. "Richard Wilson and the Transformation of European Landscape Painting (New Haven and Cardiff)," March 6, 2014–June 1, 2014.

  • References

    Jacob Bean The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1965-1975: Drawings. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1975, p. 61, ill.

    Edgar Peters Bowron, Edgar Peters Bowron, Joseph J. Rishel, Philadelphia Museum of Art Art in Rome in the Eighteenth Century. Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, 2000, (entry by John Pinto), cat. no. 19, pp. 139-40, ill.

    Jacob Bean Patterns of Collecting: Selected Acquisitions, 1965-1975 Explanatory texts accompanying an exhibition: December 6, 1975 through March 23, 1976. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1975, p. 61, ill.

    "Departmental Accessions: Drawings." in Annual Report of the Trustees of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, July 1, 1970-June 30, 1971. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, no. 101, New York, 1971, p. 16.

    "Italian Drawings." Apollo. Apollo Magazine, vol. 96, New York, November 1972, fig. no. 8, p. 450, ill.

    Linda Boyer Gillies "An Eighteenth Century Roman View, Panini's Scalinata della Trinità dei Morti." in The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 30, no. 4, New York, 1972, fig. no. fig. 1, p. 176, ill.

    Jacob Bean Drawings Recently Acquired, 1969-1971. Exh. cat.: January 18 - April 16. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1972, p. 14, no. 35.

    Jacob Bean Artists in Rome in the 18th Century: Drawings and Prints [cover title: Rome in the 18th century]. Ex. cat.: February 7 - May 7. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1978.

    Jacob Bean, William M. Griswold 18th Century Italian Drawings in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Ex. cat. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1990, cat. no. 151, fig. no. 151, p. 159, ill.

    Anna Lo Bianco, Angela Negro Il Settecento a Roma Ex. cat., Museo Nazionale di Palazzo Venezia, Rome. Rome, 2005, (entry by Laura Bartoni), cat. no. 150, p. 254, ill.

  • See also
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History