Figure Study
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Federico Barocci
Italian, 1603 - 1607
Black and white chalk, beige chalk on right knee, with stylus indentations, on blue paper (recto); black and white chalk (verso)

11 13/16 x 10 11/16 in.

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Federico Barocci applied black and white chalk energetically to describe the body of a man holding a large bowl under one arm. Using assured strokes he captured the man's hunched position as he leans forward, legs bent, balancing the weight of the bowl by leaning to the other side. White chalk lines create texture on his robe as it slips from his shoulders, while softly smudged patches on his shoulders, neck, and face give his body a glistening sheen.

Barocci produced the drawing as a study for a servant in the left corner of a painting. On the verso, another sketch shows the same figure drawn facing the opposite direction. Perhaps Barocci made it when he was contemplating placing the figure at the other side of the composition.

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Verso: Figure Study