Colnaghi Collections_Vol 01 - Page 144

Játiva, Valencia, 1591 – Naples, 1652
Saint Judas Thaddeus
Oil on canvas
65 x 49.7 cm
During his stay in Rome, Jusepe de Ribera painted two series
Private Collection
of Apostles. Produced around 1609, the earlier set is known
as the “minor” series because of the small scale of the works.
It is also referred to as the series of the “cartigli” (cartouches)
Viviana Farina, Al sole e all’ombra di Ribera, exh. cat.
as each painting contains a cartouche with the name of the
(Castellammare di Stabia: Confraternità, 2014),
relevant apostle on a ledge in the foreground. Six works from
p. 230, no. 283; Gianni Papi, “Le prime serie
this dispersed group are known today, split between the Musée
di Apostoli di Ribera, fra Roma e Napoli,” in
des Beaux Arts, Rennes, Musée du Louvre, Paris, Museo di
Gianni Papi, Entro l’aria bruna d’una camera rinchiusa.
Belle Arti, Budapest, the Parish of Nivillac, and two private
Scritti su Caravaggio e l’ambiente caravaggesco (Rome:
collections. Another depiction of an apostle (possibly Saint Peter)
Artestudiopaparo, 2016), pp. 90-95.
in the Koelliker collection – a work which has been reduced in
size – may also belong to this set.
The second series can be dated to ca. 1611-1612 and is of larger
dimensions. It was commissioned by Pietro Cussida, the king
of Spain’s representative for trade and commerce in Rome and
one of the young Ribera’s most important patrons. Cussida also
owned other works by the artist: Resurrection of Lazarus (Madrid,
Museo del Prado), the Five Senses (now in various museums and
private collections), and probably the Denial of Saint Peter in
Palazzo Corsini in Rome. Eleven apostles from the Cussida series
are known, although one, Christ the Redeemer, only through photos;
those extant today are divided between the Fondazione Longhi in
Florence, the Museo di Capodimonte in Naples, and two private
collections. The Saint Andrew and Saint John from the group are
still missing.1


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