Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History



  • Self–Portrait
    Salvator Rosa (Italian, Neapolitan, 1615–1673)
    Oil on canvas; 39 x 31 1/4 in. (99.1 x 79.4 cm)
    Bequest of Mary L. Harrison, 1921 (21.105)

    According to the inscription, the picture was a gift by Rosa to his friend Giovanni Battista Ricciardi (1624–1686). Ricciardi was a man of letters and a reader in moral philosophy at Pisa. The painting is listed in an inventory drawn up after Ricciardi's death as "a philosopher who writes on a skull." Although it was later described as a portrait of Ricciardi, the figure resembles Rosa and it is likely to be a self-portrait. The wreath of cypress is an emblem of mourning, while on the table is a book by the Roman stoic philosopher Seneca (Seneca's name is a pentiment; it was painted out by Rosa). The Greek inscription on the skull reads "Behold, whither, when."

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    On view: Gallery 621
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  • Self-Portrait
    Salvator Rosa (Italian, Neapolitan, 1615–1673)
    Oil on canvas; 39 x 31 1/4 in. (99.1 x 79.4 cm)
    Bequest of Mary L. Harrison, 1921 (21.105)

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    Close