Completed Continental European before 1800 14 Could this painting be a copy, or studio version, of Saint Lucy by Carlo Dolci?

Figure with a Book and a Quill Pen
Topic: Artist

Is this a copy or a studio version of a painting of Saint Lucy by Carlo Dolci in the Uffizi: a painting of which there is a copy in the Ashmolean Museum?

'Head of a young Saint (St Lucy?)' after Carlo Dolci: http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings/paintings/head-of-a-young-saint-st-lucy

Collection note:

'We have very little information about this painting. The canvas is very dirty, it doesn't appear to be signed, and one of the stretcher bars has 'SMITH / 181347 / 48/48 / STORED' written on it. The date is thought to be mid- to late 18th century. Any further information and comments would be most welcome.'

Martin Hopkinson, Entry reviewed by Art UK

Completed, Outcome

Jade King,

This painting is now listed as depicting Saint John the Evangelist and that it is a copy of a work by Carlo Dolci.

These amends will appear on the Art UK website in due course. Thank you to all for participating in this discussion. To those viewing this discussion for the first time, please see below for all comments that led to this conclusion.

13 comments

Jochen Suy,

It is a very similar pose, but aren't we looking at Saint John the Evangelist here?

Toby Campbell,

Without a high resolution image this is very difficult to be certain but it looks like a St John (as Jochen Suy says) based on the Dolci of St Lucy. It may be by one of his followers. Perhaps Cesare Dandini.

Saracino Francesco,

Yes, this is John the Evangelist (note the book and the pen); his colours are green and red. Dolci painted several times the fourth Evangelist, but never one like this. Probably by a florentine painter ispired by Dolci.

Al Brown,

See the link below for another version - not, I think, by Dolci:

http://nuke.pastibencini.com/LaGalleria/Storiaperimmagini/tabid/59/language/en-US/Default.aspx

And this link about the series the original could have formed a part of - though I have been unable to locate an image of the picture sold in 1995:

http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/paintings/carlo-dolci-saint-mark-5584828-details.aspx?from=searchresults&intObjectID=5584828&sid=22b3bb3f-d1d3-4b0e-958f-b3cf91b2222b

Martin Kemp,

This looks like a stock variant on the St. Lucy (and not dissimilar Magdalene with oil jar), given a pen to look like St.J the Evangelist. The hand has not been changed. Dolci knew how saints held pens - not like this!
Martin Kemp

Martin Hopkinson,

A major exhibition on Carlo Dolci opens at the Palazzo Pitti, Florence in July. The catalogue is written by Anna Bisceglia, Sandro Bellesi and Mina Gregori.

The composition, style and octagonal format of both this and the Pasti Bencini painting suggest that there must have existed a prototype by Carlo Dolci, which I have not been able to identify. As has been noted during the discussion, the subject is almost certainly St John the Evangelist, although his attribute, the eagle, which appears conspicuously in other versions of this subject by Carlo Dolci, is not evident. This painting is of markedly lower quality than Dolci's work. It was probably painted a good deal later.

Victor Rafael Veronesi ,

Searching on line for an image connected to Carlo Dolci San Giovanni Evangelista [it's a Saint John evangelist, not a Saint Mary Magdalen (not Lucy...) , both for the colours of the vests ( usually green and red), both for the physiognomy ] doesn't held emerged the presence of a picture different from the one posted that should be the source for the copy made https://forum.termometropolitico.it/625105-3-gennaio-ottava-di-s-giovanni-apostolo-ed-evangelista.html.

This private collection painting looks like a derivation too, rather than the the original of which the Harris Museum and Art Gallery picture is probably a copy. However both works surely point to a common source -- a lost, or at present unlocated, prototype by Carlo Dolci.

Jade King,

The collection have been contacted about this recommendation.

Jade King,

The collection are happy to agree to the changes suggested.