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Adamo Scultori

(circa 1530 Mantua – 1587 Rome)

Pan Playing on the Flute and a Nymph. Engraving in an oval, printed in brown ink. 20.2 x 13.2 cm. Bartsch 11, Bellini 15 I (of III).

Adamo Scultori was the son and pupil of Giovanni Battista Scultori. Like his father, Adamo started working as an engraver in Mantua in the years between 1542–45 and subsequently settled in Rome around 1565. He was a productive master and his extensive œuvre comprises about one hundred and fifty prints, most of which are reproductive engravings after Giulio Romano and Michelangelo and works of Roman antiquity.

The present composition after an invention of Giulio Romano was probably produced between 1563 and 1565, just before his departure for Rome. The print is executed in a disciplined burin technique involving a system of dense hatching patterns characteristic of the engraving style of the Mantuan School. Despite a certain dryness of treatment the portrayal has an elemental energy befitting its classical theme.

The present proof is a rare early impression printed in brown ink, before the complete reworking of the plate with the burin and before Cupid’s fig leaf. An excellent, delicate and tonal impression, printed on the full sheet. In mint condition.

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