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  • "Paulo Farinate"
    Type: inscription
    Location: former mount
    Materials: pen and ink
  • initials
    Type: inscription
    Location: verso of attached book page
    Materials: red chalk
  • James Bowdoin III( Collector, Boston) - 1811.
  • Bowdoin College Museum of Art( Museum, Brunswick, Maine) 1811- . Bequest
  • Old Master Drawings at Bowdoin College
    • Bowdoin College Museum of Art. ( 5/17/1985 - 7/7/1985)
    • Clark Art Institute. ( 9/14/1985 - 10/27/1985)
    • University of Kansas. ( 1/19/1986 - 3/2/1986)
    • Art Gallery of Ontario. ( 5/17/1986 - 6/29/1986)
Type: catalogue
Author: Henry Johnson
Document Title: Catalogue of the Bowdoin College Art Collections
Publ. Place: Brunswick, Maine
Reference: no. 11
Remarks: (as Farinati)
Section Title: Pt. I, The Bowdoin Drawings
Date: 1885

Author: Rev. F. H. Allen
Document Title: The Bowdoin Collection
Publ. Place: Brunswick, Maine
Location: pt. 5, repr.
Remarks: (as Farinati)
Section Title: [five parts of four illustration each, with individual texts]
Date: 1886

Author: F. J. Mather, Jr.
Document Title: Art in America, vol. I, no. 4
Location: pp. 247-248, repr.
Reference: fig. 15
Remarks: (as Farinati)
Section Title: Drawings by Old masters at Bowdoin College
Date: 1913

Type: catalogue
Author: Bowdoin College Museum of Art
Document Title: Bowdoin Museum of Fine Arts, Walker Art Building
Edition: 4th
Publ. Place: Brunswick, Maine
Reference: no. 11
Remarks: (as Farinati)
Publisher: Bowdoin College
Section Title: Descriptive Catalogue of the . . .
Date: 1930

Type: exhibition catalogue
Author: David P. Becker
Document Title: Old Master Drawings at Bowdoin College
Publ. Place: Brunswick, Maine
Location: pp. 84-85
Reference: no. 38 (illus.)
Remarks: (as Gambara)
Publisher: Bowdoin College
Date: 1985

Gambara studied with Antonio Campi in Brescia and went with him to Cremona for a period. Returning to Brescia around 1552, he studied with Girolamo Romanino. He worked primarily in that city but executed projects in Mantua, Cremona, and Parma. From 1567 until 1571 Gambara decorated the nave of Parma Cathedral with a cycle of frescoes from the Life of Christ.

Traditionally associated with Paolo Farinati (1524—1606), the Bowdoin drawing is not consistent with his style, and Oberhuber was the first to suggest Gambara as its author. This attribution was affirmed by De Grazia on the basis of a photograph.1 She tentatively associated it with the fresco of the Massacre of the Innocents in the cathedral at Parma, as perhaps a rejected study, for there are no precisely corresponding figures in the painting.2 A compositional study for the entire fresco is in the Pierpont Morgan Library (formerly Scholz Collection).3 There are similarities of draughtsmanship with the Bowdoin sheet in the prominent outlining of facial features and the very regular, stylized definition of drapery. The Bowdoin study cannot be associated firmly with any other painting by Gambara, although a very similar figural group of a mother restraining a small child can be seen in another fresco in Parma of Christ Healing the Sick.4

The prominent outlining in the Bowdoin sheet is also clear in a drawing of a seated woman in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, and in an earlier sketch for a decorative frieze in the Palazzo Averoldi in Brescia, now in a private Italian collection.5 These same features are even more evident in Gambara's painted frescoes, such as those for his own house in Brescia or those for the monastery at Rodengo (in which a putto has a very similar pose to that in the Bowdoin drawing).6 The figures and drapery in an impressive study in the British Museum depicting Jael and Sisera are also similar in style.7 Here the artist experiments with two different versions of the child's pose. Gambara seems most often to have drawn on colored papers, judging from known works, evidently preferring to draw in a chiaroscuro-like manner.

1. Letter to the author, 8 February 1983.

2. The fresco is repr. in P. V. Begni Redona and G. Vezzoli, Lattanzio Gambara, Pittore (Brescia, 1978), p. 185.

3. Ibid., p. 249, no. 26, repr.

4. Ibid., p. 187, repr.

5. Respectively, repr. in ibid., p. 249, no. 28; and p. 243, no. 5.

6. Ibid., pp. 125 and 208, repr.

7. Ibid., p. 246, no. 16.

Commentary credited to David P. Becker (or not otherwise captioned) appeared in his catalogue Old Master Drawings at Bowdoin College (Brunswick: Bowdoin College Museum of Art, 1985).