Lodovico Cardi, called Il Cigoli (Italian, 1559-1613). The Dispute of Saint Catherine with Emperor Maxentius, 1602-03. Pen and brown iron-gall ink and brush and blue wash, with occasional touches of brown wash, heightened with traces of lead white (partially discolored), over black chalk, on cream laid paper; laid down on cream card, ruled along the edges in black ink; 390 mm x 424 mm. Jean and Steven Goldman Collection.
Santi di Tito, (Italian, 1536-1602). Tobias and the Angel, 1572. Black chalk, heightened with traces of white chalk, on blue laid paper; 295 x 180 mm (sight). Jean and Steven Goldman Collection.
Art Institute of Chicago
111 South Michigan Avenue
Jean and Steven Goldman Prints and Drawings Galleries in the Richard and Mary L. Gray Wing
Drawn to Drawings: The Goldman Collection
October 18, 2008- January 18, 2009
A new exhibition of rare Italian Renaissance and Baroque works on paper opens this fall at the Art Institute of Chicago. Drawn to Drawings: The Goldman Collection celebrates Chicago-area collectors Jean and Steven Goldman's impressive collection of 16th- and 17th-century works on paper. The exhibition presents 140 drawings by some of the most famous Italian masters — including Raphael, the Carracci, and Pietro da Cortona — spanning the years 1450-1700, with the centerpiece being the current promised gift of 30 works to the museum's Department of Prints and Drawings.
The Goldman collection is particularly rich in drawings by Raphael and his school, in works by the Roman and Florentine Mannerists, and in exemplars of the Roman Baroque. The collection contains the full gamut of drawing types: preparatory sketches, detail studies, compositional designs, and presentation drawings that offer unique insight into two centuries of the highest achievements of Italian draftsmanship. As Jean Goldman notes, the selection "provides a contrast between artifice and nature, the stylization of form and the natural, realistic, or classic description of it." An interesting feature of the drawings is the frequent presence of pentimenti, changes or indications of underlying images that the artist may have edited in the process of creation. Jean and Steven Goldman are especially drawn to works, as they put it, "that document the rejected decisions — sometimes the more interesting and original choices."
The exhibition highlights a large compositional study of the Nativity that has recently been attributed to Raphael, supported by infrared photography showing the artist's significant underdrawing and compositional changes. With its rich group of early 16th-century drawings, the collection also establishes a dialogue among the Italian masters of the age, illuminating the ways in which artists working in the wake of Raphael--such as Giulio Romano, Parmigianino, and Perino del Vaga — responded to and influenced regional styles in Florence, Rome, and elsewhere. The unique contribution of Venetian and north Italian draftsmen is evident in the drawings of Jacopo Tintoretto, Domenico Campagnola, Camillo Boccaccino, and others. The courtly elegance and invention of late-16th-century Italian draftsmanship is richly represented in the collection, which also includes important drawings by those Counter-Reformation artists whose rejection of Mannerist artifice ushered in the renewed naturalism of the 17th century. Drawings by the Carracci family and the most famous members of their school--Guido Reni, Domenichino, and Giovanni Lanfranco--reveal the profound importance of the Carracci academy, with its emphasis on drawing from life. Other landmarks of the 17th century include the emotionally charged drawings of Guercino and the restrained classicism of the work of Andrea Sacchi, which may be appreciated in counterpoint to the sumptuous style of Pietro da Cortona, the greatest exponent of the Roman High Baroque.
The Goldmans have been longtime patrons of the arts and the Art Institute, generously providing funds towards the Prints and Drawings facility that includes the Jean and Steven Goldman Prints and Drawings Galleries and the Jean and Steven Goldman Prints and Drawings Study Center. Drawn to Drawings highlights one of the most important collections of its kind in the United States--one that the couple spent over 30 years assembling. The Goldmans' commitment to the history of Italian drawing is evident not only in their generosity and the scope of their collections, but also in Jean Goldman's work as a scholar and a well-published authority in the field of 16th- and 17th-century Italian art. She received her doctorate in Italian art from the University of Chicago and was an adjunct member of the faculty of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In addition to her scholarly publications, she has lectured widely in Europe and America.
Drawn to Drawings offers the opportunity to explore a collection admired by scholars and collectors from around the world. Furthermore, it serves as a unique window into the artistic process itself, illuminating varied regional, technical, and stylistic approaches to drawing.
Guercino (Giovanni Francesco Barbieri), (Italian, 1591-1666). King David, c. 1635. Pen and brown ink, with brush and brown and gray wash, on cream laid paper, laid down on cream card; 158 x 127 mm. Jean and Steven Goldman Collection.