The J. Paul Getty Museum

Neptune

Object Details

Title:

Neptune

Artist/Maker:

Giulio Campi (Italian, 1508 - 1573)

Culture:

Italian

Place:

Italy (Place Created)

Date:

1541

Medium:

Black chalk, the principle lines indented (recto); Rubbed with black chalk for transfer (verso)

Object Number:

90.GB.66

Dimensions:

42.7 × 27.6 cm (16 13/16 × 10 7/8 in.)

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Object Description

Neptune, the Roman god of the sea, grasps his trident while resting one foot on the scaly head of a dolphin. He stands on a pedestal against a pilaster, the base of which is mainly defined by the dolphin's body. On each side are the hastily drawn lines of a vertical piece of architecture, while farther to the right are the dark shadows of his arms and trident.

Giulio Campi probably produced this sketch as a preparatory study for the decoration of one of the triumphal arches erected in Cremona on the occasion of Emperor Charles V's entry into the city on August 18, 1541. Decorated with statues and representations of his famous deeds and insignia, these arches marked the ruler's route through the city gates to his lodgings. The number of pentimenti in this rapidly drawn work suggests to scholars that Campi completed the drawing in some haste, probably working under a tight deadline. For example, he produced two further alternatives for the position of the head, both in profile and tilted farther back, but he did not bother to reinforce either in darker chalk.

Exhibitions
Exhibitions
Italian Master Drawings (May 5 to July 19, 1992)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), May 5 to July 19, 1992
16th and 17th Century Italian Drawings (December 15, 1992 to February 28, 1993)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), December 15, 1992 to February 28, 1993
North Italian Drawings of the 15th through the 17th Century (July 27 to October 10, 1993)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), July 27 to October 10, 1993
Drawings from Leonardo to Titian: A North Italian Itinerary (December 6, 2005 to February 26, 2006)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), December 6, 2005 to February 26, 2006
Disegno: Drawing in Europe 1520-1600 (November 13, 2012 to February 3, 2013)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 13, 2012 to February 3, 2013
Gods and Heroes: European Drawings of Classical Mythology (November 19, 2013 to February 9, 2014)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 19, 2013 to February 9, 2014
Drawing: The Art of Change (October 4, 2016 to January 1, 2017)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), October 4, 2016 to January 1, 2017