The Vision of Saint Bruno

Object Details


The Vision of Saint Bruno


Pier Francesco Mola (Italian, 1612 - 1666)




about 1660


Oil on canvas


194 x 136.8 cm (76 3/8 x 53 7/8 in.)

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During his devotions in the wilderness, Saint Bruno, the founder of the Carthusian order, a monastic community committed to solitary meditation, experienced a vision. Gazing intensely up at the sky, the saint tentatively reaches out to touch the mystical illusion of angels appearing in the sky. To the left, two tall trees cross each other at an angle, forming a cross. Below the rolling clouds, hills and land gently recede into the distance.

The painter Pier Francesco Mola won fame in Rome for his rich landscapes and dramatic cloud formations, based on the Venetian landscape tradition. He painted Saint Bruno's white robes with long, smooth vertical sweeps of the brush, creating a landscape of the soft, heavy fabric.

about 1660 - 1693

Cardinal Flavio Chigi, 1631 - 1693 (Rome, Italy), commissioned from the artist, about 1660; by inheritance to Agostino Chigi, 1693.

1693 - 1705

Prince Agostino Chigi, Italian, 1634 - 1705 (Rome, Italy), by inheritance within the Chigi family, 1705.

1705 -

Chigi Family (Rome, Italy), by inheritance to Eleonora Chigi Incisa della Rocchetta.

by 1956 -

Marchesa Eleonora Chigi Incisa della Rocchetta (Rome, Italy), by inheritance to Giovanni Incisa della Rocchetta.

- 1980

Marchese Giovanni Incisa della Rocchetta, died 1980 (Rome, Italy), by inheritance within the Incisa della Rochetta family, 1980.

1980 - still in 1987

Incisa della Rocchetta Family (Rome, Italy)

- 1989

Private Dealer (or Private Collection) (Switzerland), possibly sold to Whitfield Fine Art, Ltd., 1989.


Whitefield Fine Art Limited (London, England), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1989.

San Salvatore in Lauro (1692) (see Da Marchi, 1987)
Il Seicento Europeo: Realismo, Classicismo, Barocco (December 1, 1956 to January 31, 1957) (cat. no 210)
  • Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Comune di Roma, (Rome), December 1, 1956 to January 31, 1957

Jaffé, David. Summary Catalogue of European Paintings in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 87, ill.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 6th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001), pp. 106-7, ill.

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