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A Bacchanal

A Bacchanal

Artist: Alessandro Magnasco (Italian, 1667 – 1749)

Date: ca. 1730-1735
Medium: Oil on paper mounted on wood panel
Image: 13 x 18 3/8 in. (33 x 46.7 cm)
Frame: 19 3/4 × 25 1/16 × 2 3/8 in. (50.2 × 63.7 × 6.1 cm)
Credit Line: Museum purchase, 1962
Object number: SN745
On View: Art Museum Gallery 18
About this ObjectPaintings by Magnasco are easily identified by their energetic brushwork; nervous, sketchy style; shadowy, eerie landscapes; and tiny, frenzied, flame-like figures. These qualities were also a good match for the dark subject matter the painter often explored. These pictures, for example, present turbulent depictions of contemporary poverty and pagan religious frenzy. Typically, and indeed here, Magnasco used a limited palette of dark colors to articulate his macabre, ruinous landscapes, and added blue accents to represent swirling drapery and quick, agitated daubs of white for highlights.
By 1914, Benno Geiger (1882–1965), Rodaun, Austria, and sold before 1945. (By 1962, Frederick Mont, New York); purchased by the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, Florida, 1962.
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