Colnaghi Collections_Vol 01 - Page 149



XXI
JUSEPE DE RIBERA,
CALLED LO SPAGNOLETTO
Játiva, Valencia, 1591 – Naples, 1652
Saint Paul
Oil on panel, oval made up to a rectangle
53 x 41 cm
Signed and dated centre right: Jusepe de / Ribera esp. / F. 1648
PROVENANCE
This painting presents another example of the closely cropped
Anon. Sale, Sotheby’s, Madrid,
images of apostles and classical philosophers that Ribera
21 November 1996, lot 8.
executed throughout his career and that count amongst the most
Private Collection, Spain.
notable achievements of Neapolitan Baroque art. In these works,
the artist chose as his models people from daily life found on the
LITERATURE
streets of Rome and Naples, embracing an intense Caravaggesque
Nicola Spinosa, L’opera completa (Naples: Electa Napoli,
naturalism, rather than the idealized figures more commonly
2006), p. 403, cat. no. C43.
favoured in religious works of the period.
Nicola Spinosa, Ribera. La obra completa (Madrid:
Fundación Arte Hispánico, 2008), p. 510, cat. no. C36.
Noteworthy for its high quality of execution and beautifully
preserved passages of impasto paint, the powerful Saint Paul
dates to the latter part of Ribera’s life and perfectly illustrates the
type of direct portrayal for which the artist was justly celebrated.
The work has also benefitted from a recent cleaning, which has
revealed the high quality of execution and the autograph status
of the work, which on account of its uncleaned state, had been
attributed by Nicola Spinosa to the studio of the artist.
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149

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