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Il Disegno. Etching and engraving after Lorenzo Pasinelli. 32.7 x 25 cm. Bartsch 5, Ferrara/Bertelà, Incisori Bolognesi ed Emiliani del sec. XVIII, 656.
The Bolognese painter and etcher, Giuseppe Maria Rolli, who was taught by Giovanni Battista Caccioli and Domenico Maria Canuti, subsequently distinguished himself as a fresco painter in his native city. Rolli’s printed oeuvre is small, a mere five sheets being definitively attributed to him.
Recorded in the literature as an allegory of drawing, the present sheet reproduces Lorenzo Pasinelli’s painting of the so-called Budrioli Sibyl (Sotheby’s auction of 8 December 2010, now in the Art Renewal Center, New Jersey), which in turn is based on a drawing by Simone Cantarini (now in the Royal Collection, London, inv. no. RCIN 903266). Pasinelli produced the painting for the Budrioli family as a companion piece to another Sibyl made by his teacher, Domenico Maria Canuti. The Sibyl receives inspiration from a small winged genius, with whom she appears to be absorbed in an intimate conversation. Rolli’s precise etching technique with its varied linework and clear tonal gradations enables him to portray a scene that is in keeping with the aesthetic taste of Bolognese Baroque Classicism. This very rare sheet radiates a remarkably powerful presence despite the relatively small format. A very fine, contrasting impression with thread margins around the framing line. Minor defects, otherwise in excellent condition.
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