frequently used in Neapolitan churches to impress spectators. 1 Bernardo De Dominici, Vite dei Pittori, Scultori ed Architetti, Naples, Di Mauro Editore, 1970, p. 494. 2 Gennaro Toscano, “Rapporti tra il commendatore Fra D. Giuseppe Maria Cicinelli e il pittore napoletano Filippo Falciatore (17181768)”, in Atti del circolo culturale G. B. Duns Scoto di Roccarainola, 1981, no 7, p. 34-42.
30 FILIPPO FALCIATORE Active in Naples 1718 – 1768
Allegory of Air Pen and brown ink highlighted with grey wash over a sketch in black chalk, contours pricked for transfer, watermark of three crowned circles 287 x 195 mm (11 1/4 x 7 3/4 in.)
BIBLIOGRAPHY Laurie Marty de Cambiaire, “Filippo Falciatore dessinateur: trois nouvelles propositions”, in Le Dessin napolitain, papers of the international symposium, Paris, École normale supérieure, 6-8 March 2008, Rome, De Luca Editori d’Arte, 2010, p. 172, fig. 9 (reproduced)
formerly published as attributed to Fedele Fischetti (fig. 1).1 These works, in the same technique with the same dimensions and both picked for transfer, belong to a decorative project on the theme of the Four Elements. We recognize Filippo Falciatore’s graceful and angular hand and his typical feminine figures, comparable for example to his Erminia sitting in a similar position in his Erminia with the Shepherds (private collection). The destination of these gracious allegories is still unknown. We can deduce from their dimensions that they were intended to decorate the small areas of a piece of furniture or a sedan chair. The Four Elements represented by antique gods are a common decorative theme, which allow pleasant decorative variations. Neapolitan artists of the 18th Century did not hesitate to make the most of this, both in painting and the decorative arts. The theme of Air is here treated with some originality; although the peacock is Juno’s traditional companion, it is more unusual to see her equipped with a bolt of lightning and a drum. These two attributes are however appropriate since they recall light and sound disturbances in the sky, evocations of the famous arguments of the Olympian couple. 1 Catherine Loisel (dir.), Splendeurs baroques de Naples. Dessins des XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles, Poitiers, musée Sainte-Croix/Paris, Gourcuff Gradenigo, 2006, p. 234-235, no 108, illustrated p. 109.
31 FILIPPO FALCIATORE Active in Naples 1718 – 1768
Hercules and Lichas Black chalk, pen and brown ink, green wash on several sheets of paper put together, pricked for transfer, watermark of three crowned circles 457 x 329 mm (18 x 12 15/16 in.) This drawing is different to others by Filippo Falciatore in the use of the brush which gives the lines a broader and less incisive appearance than the pen. However, his usual manner of creating can be found here: he glues several sheets together (their watermark is moreover similar to that of the Allegory of the Air) and he pricks his drawing for transfer. Again, this is a working utensil.
This elegant drawing is again a cartoon and can be related to a sheet in the Musée des Beaux-Arts of Dijon depicting Earth,
The rather extravagant, energetic gestures of his figures is recognizable, which animates his scenes of brawls or assaults, for example the La Cuccagna al Largo di Palazzo (Naples, Giannone Collection) or L’Assalto al carro dei carcerati al Largo del Mercatello (New York, art market). Above all, we observe the same contrast between the violent subjects and the presence of rather incongruous decorative elements, such as the flowers. The difference in technique does not hide the familial relationship between the physiognomy and silhouette of Hercules and the figure of Tereus in the drawing we present above. They both have long legs with rather exaggerated muscles, intentional anatomical deformations and a specific elastic flexibility. The same energy animates the figures in our drawing and that of the Young Nobleman attached to a post (Museo di San Martino), which prepares the Brigands
130 NEAPOLITAN DRAWINGS
Published on Mar 11, 2014