Bust of an Angel

Object Details


Bust of an Angel


Hendrick Goltzius (Dutch, 1558 - 1617)




Holland (Place created)




Black chalk, oiled black chalk, heightened with white chalk


55.6 x 39.7 cm (21 7/8 x 15 5/8 in.)

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The large head of an angel in profile nearly fills the sheet of paper on which it is drawn. The grand scale of the image as well as the broad handling of the chalk are characteristic of Hendrick Goltzius's tendency to explore concerns more usually associated with painting in his later drawings. The figure in this drawing closely resembles the Archangel Gabriel in Goltzius's painting in the Pushkin Museum in Moscow; like this drawing, the painting is signed and dated 1609.

This drawing was not made in preparation for the painting, however. Like several other large imaginary heads and figures Goltzius produced in this period, it was probably made as a finished work of art in its own right.


Private Collection Sweden


Private Collection Malmo, Sweden


Private Collection London


Art Market Boston

16th Century Northern European Drawings (February 18 to May 2, 1992)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), February 18 to May 2, 1992
Dawn of the Golden Age: Northern Netherlandish Art, 1580 - 1620 (December 11, 1993 to March 6, 1994) (218, p.547-48; Cat. by G. Luijten, A. van Suchtelen, et al.)
  • Rijksmuseum (Amsterdam), December 11, 1993 to March 6, 1994
Master Drawings from the J. Paul Getty Museum (December 16, 1997 to February 22, 1998)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), December 16, 1997 to February 22, 1998
Hendrick Goltzius 1558-1617 (March 7, 2003 to January 4, 2004) (93, pp258-59; Cat. by H. Leeflang, G. Luijten, et al.)
  • Rijksmuseum (Amsterdam), March 7 to May 25, 2003
  • The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), June 23 to September 7, 2003
  • Toledo Museum of Art (Toledo), October 18, 2003 to January 4, 2004
Paper Art: Finished Drawings in Holland 1590-1800 (September 6 to November 20, 2005)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), September 6 to November 20, 2005
The Secret Life of Drawings (November 23, 2010 to February 13, 2011)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 23, 2010 to February 13, 2011