Rocky Landscape with a Waterfall
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Girolamo Muziano
Italian, about 1570 - 1575
Pen and brown ink
18 15/16 x 15 3/16 in.

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Girolamo Muziano used a number of devices to weave together the elements of this mountain landscape. A protruding rock extends from the left across the stream, leading the eye across the bridge and along a ridge on the far bank and on to a craggy peak in the distance. The small stream descending in a waterfall provides another compositional axis. Muziano used the paper's blank areas to provide his brightest highlights and further capture the viewer's attention.

As this drawing shows, Muziano's precise technique and cross-hatched shadows were readily translatable to the engraved line. He often supplied compositional drawings for engravings, and this sheet may have been a preparatory study for a print. The three variations on this composition in other collections indicate that this drawing may also have originally been intended as part of a series on the penitent saints. One shows a saint in the bottom left corner, while the other two have empty spaces there; perhaps Muziano left the spot open for that purpose.