Un nuovo disegno copia della Pietà di Michelangelo per Vittoria Colonna e Reginald Pole

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This article discusses an unpublished, anonymous sixteenth century drawing, a copy after a very famous invenzione by Michelangelo Buonarroti, the Pietà, which following his biographers, the artist made for a friend, the poet Vittoria Colonna. According to most scholars, Michelangelo’s Pietà was a so-called “presentation-drawing” and was to be recognized in a sheet nowadays at the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum in Boston, also known in drawn copies, prints and paintings. However, recent studies have produced new evidence that Michelangelo’s Pietà circulated also painted among the Spirituali group, suggesting that it was a painting rather than a drawing. Moreover some scholars propose to recognized an original Michelangelo’s painting in the one owned by cardinal Reginald Pole, now identified in the Ragusa’s Pietà. The unpublished drawing is in a private collection in Milan where it came from different collections including the one of the Sir Joshua Reynolds’ (1723-1792). The drawing presents some differences with the Boston drawing and more similarities with the Ragusa’s Pietà. This supports the thesis that not one but two versions of the Colonna’s Pietà existed. The second version seems to be recognized into the new discovered Ragusa’s Pieta and the Milan drawing. This last one would be destined to become a painting. This new drawing takes its place in the scholarly debate on Michelangelo’s Pietà, drawn or painted, and enriches it with a new iconographical source. Finally, the article tries to suggest some possible authorship among the artists, which were in contact with the Pietà at that time: Battista Franco, Giulio Clovio, Fermo Ghisoni. Ghisoni’s authorship specifically seems the most quoted since according to the sources he made some copies of Pole’s Pietà.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-57
JournalArte Lombarda
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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