Group of Draped Figures

Artist: Attributed to Antonello da Messina (Antonello di Giovanni d'Antonio) (Italian, Messina ca. 1430–1479 Messina)

Date: early 1460s

Medium: Tip of the brush (or fine pen?) and brown ink

Dimensions: 4 5/16 x 5 7/8 in. (11 x 14.9 cm)

Classification: Drawings

Credit Line: Robert Lehman Collection, 1975

Accession Number: 1975.1.265

Description

Antonello da Messina's contact with Northern European art had a profound influence on his style. Several features of this drawing—in particular, the elongated proportions of the figures and the heavy drapery arranged in sharp, angular folds—demonstrate Antonello's absorption of Netherlandish and Burgundian styles. A more elaborate drawing of this composition, with the group of figures set against a cityscape, is preserved in the Musée du Louvre. The relationship between the two sheets remains uncertain; the Lehman sheet may be a partial copy of the Louvre version produced by Antonello or a member of his workshop according to his design.

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