Colnaghi Foundation Journal 01 - Page 123



122
TI TIA N / Unidentified Donor Presented to the Virgin and Child by Saint Luke
Fig. 8 / Unidentified painter
after Titian, Virgin and Child
with a Donor and Saint
Luke, oil on canvas, present
whereabouts unknown.
was included neither by Ivanoff-Zampetti nor Mason
Rinaldi, who presumably considered it a studio work.21
These paintings, which are of very different types and
were painted some half-a-century apart, bear minimal
resemblance to each other and still less to the Royal
Collection painting; reference to them undermines
rather than underpins Shearman’s attribution.
Furthermore, to attribute the Royal Collection painting
to Palma takes no account of the historical context.
Van Dyck sketched his copy while Palma was alive
and active and whether or not the two painters were
personally acquainted, Van Dyck would have been
aware of Palma’s manner. When the painting entered
TI TI AN / Unidentified Donor Presented to the Virgin and Child by Saint Luke
Charles’s collection both Van Dyck, who owned several
Titians, and Inigo Jones, who also knew Palma’s work
(his drawings come closer to Palma’s in style than to
those of any other artist) were available for consultation
and neither is likely to have been deceived.22 And finally,
the King himself was well-informed about Italian
painting, owned a number of canvases by Palma – four
of which remain in the Royal Collection – and would
surely have been able to distinguish Palma’s work from
that of Titian, some of whose greatest paintings he also
possessed. One can only wait to see whether a future
cleaning and restoration of the painting will validate
the Royal judgement.
Fig. 9 / Circle of Titian, Virgin
and Child with a Donor,
oil on canvas, present
whereabouts unknown.
123

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