Four Studies of Heads Drawn over a Copy of Saint John the Evangelist by Correggio (recto); Three Studies of Men (verso)
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Annibale Carracci, draftsman; or Lodovico Carracci, draftsman
Italian, about 1585
Black chalk (recto); black and red chalk (verso)
10 7/8 x 8 1/8 in.

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In these studies of various men, Annibale or Lodovico Carracci observed his companions with great liveliness and force. Paper was extremely valuable, so Carracci used a sheet that already contained a copy after a figure group--the man holding a lamb drawn sideways from the left center. The two profile views of the bearded man wearing a hat, one at the top left and one along the center left edge, were probably his next additions. Gazing squarely at the viewer, the young man with his head cupped in his hands at the upper right overlaps the earlier profiles. At the bottom, drawing from the side, Carracci squeezed in a youth whose hat covers his sketchy eyes.

When the Getty Museum purchased this drawing in 1985, the conservator lifted the sheet from its mount and discovered additional studies on the verso: at the bottom another man with a hat (possibly the same man as on the recto), at the top an upside-down young boy resting on his arms, and at the right an unfinished red chalk study of a head sideways.

Other Views

Verso: Three Studies of Men
Verso: Three Studies of Men