An Officer of the Rank of 'Oberster Feldprofoss' in the Imperial Army

Object Details

Title:

An Officer of the Rank of 'Oberster Feldprofoss' in the Imperial Army

Artist/Maker(s):

Jost Amman (Swiss, 1539 - 1591)

Culture:

Swiss

Place(s):

Switzerland (Place created)

Date:

1556

Medium:

Pen and black ink, paper toned with black chalk

Dimensions:

37.9 x 24.1 cm (14 15/16 x 9 1/2 in.)

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In the 1500s, young artists practiced their drawing skills by copying the designs of more accomplished draftsmen. Jost Amman produced this image when he was only seventeen years old, carefully reproducing a print by his contemporary Virgil Solis. Although Amman painstakingly duplicated the line work of the original engraving, he changed various other features to display his own virtuosity more clearly. This drawing is far larger than the engraving, and Amman eliminated the background landscape to monumentalize the figure of the officer. The artist created texture and depth with only two techniques: fine vertical hatching and thick black outlines. Amman further enhanced the liveliness and sensuousness of the surface by preparing the paper with a pale dusting of black chalk in lines radiating from the figure.

Provenance

Hans Schneider, The Hague

Tobias Christ, Basel

April 9, 1981

Sotheby's (London), lot 12

January 13, 1988

Sotheby's (New York), lot 63

Private Collection

Exhibitions
Central European Drawings of the 16th and 17th Centuries (March 2 to May 9, 1993)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), March 2 to May 9, 1993
Drapery and Costume in European Drawings of the 15th through the 18th Century (March 28 to June 11, 1995)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), March 28 to June 11, 1995
German and Swiss Drawings from the Permanent Collection (June 6 to August 20, 2000)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), June 6 to August 20, 2000
Renaissance Drawings from Germany and Switzerland, 1470-1600 (March 27 to June 17, 2012)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), March 27 to June 17, 2012