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Two Evangelists (Saint John the Evangelist, the Author of a Gospel and possibly Saint Luke) (predella)

Carlo Crivelli (Venice c.1430 – Ascoli Piceno 1495) and Workshop

Category

Art / Oil paintings

Date

circa 1471 - 1473

Materials

Tempera and oil on panel (poplar)

Measurements

317 x 235 mm (12 1/2 x 9 1/4 in)

Place of origin

Venice

Order this image

Collection

Upton House, Warwickshire (Accredited Museum)

NT 446807

Caption

These panels once formed part of the predella (the lower tier), of an altarpiece made for the church of the Frati Conventuali di San Francesco at Montefiore dell’Aso, near Fermo, in the Marches, Italy. The altarpiece was composed of eleven parts altogether, with eight predella panels, and a triptych above. It remained in the church until the early nineteenth century, when it was dismantled, each part spread across Europe and America. The central panel was a ‘Pietà’, which is now in the National Gallery, London. According to the traditional iconography of predellas such as this, the figure of Christ would have been at the centre, flanked by Saints Peter and Paul, as the twin founders of the Christian Church. It has been suggested that two pairs of Evangelists were placed at the outer edges.

Summary

Tempera with oil painting and gilding on poplar panel (square at base with rounded tops; framed together to form a single rectangular panel, presumably on entering the Bearsted collection; fillets added at the bottom of each panel in 1999), Two Evangelists (Saint John the Evangelist and the Author of a Gospel and, possibly, Saint Luke) by Carlo Crivelli (Venice c.1430 – Ascoli Piceno 1495) and Workshop, circa 1471-1473. The two half-length figures are framed together. The young man on the left, almost facing the spectator, wearing an olive-green robe with blue and white (originally pink) cloak, is reading from a scroll; the elderly man on the right, reading a book, wears a white robe and green cloak and faces slightly to the left; gold backgrounds (re-gilt). The rectangular panels with painted surfaces forming arched tops, with gesso and priming in spandrels; additions or joins 2 inches (51 mm) from bottom.

Provenance

Almost certainly commissioned by the Frati Conventuali for their church of San Francesco at Montefiore dell’Aso, near Fermo in the Marches, where the altarpiece remained until the early nineteenth century when it was dismantled (see Related object); next recorded with the Roman dealer Cav. P. Vallati in 1858 (‘The Travel Diaries of Otto Mündler 1855-1858’, Walpole Society LI (1985), p.233 & manuscript notes of Charles Eastlake [National Gallery library] who also notes their provenance from Montefiore, presumably on Vallati’s authority; quoted in Martin Davies, from whom bought by Lieutenant Colonel G Cornwall Legh of High Legh Hall, Knutsford, Cheshire, c.1860; with Knoedler & Co. in 1922, from whom bought by the 2nd Viscount Bearsted in July 1922 for £1,000; given with Upton House to the National Trust by Walter Samuel, 2nd Viscount Bearsted (1882 – 1948), in 1948, shortly before his death

Credit line

Upton House, The Bearsted Collection (National Trust)

Makers and roles

Carlo Crivelli (Venice c.1430 – Ascoli Piceno 1495) and Workshop, artist previously catalogued as attributed to Carlo Crivelli (Venice c.1430 – Ascoli Piceno 1495), artist previously catalogued as attributed to Andrea Mantegna (Padua c.1431 – Mantua 1506), artist previously catalogued as attributed to Vittore Crivelli, artist

Exhibition history

Carlo Crivelli. Radical Illusionism in the 15th Century, IKON Gallery, Birmingham, 2022

References

Carter 1890 G. Carter, Catalogue of Paintings at High Legh, 1890, nos. 66&67 McNeil Rushforth 1900 G. McNeil Rushforth, Crivelli, London, 1900, pp.47-48, 96 Venturi 1907 L. Venturi, Le Origine della Pittura Veneziana, Venice, 1907, pp.197-8 Crowe and Cavalcaselle 1912: J.A. Crowe and G.B. Cavalcaselle, History of Painting in North Italy, London, 1912, , vol.I, p.90 (note 2) Marle 1929 - 36 R. van Marle, Development of the Italian Schools of Painting, The Hague, 1929; 1936, R. van Marle, Development of the Italian Schools of Painting, The Hague, 1936, vol. XVIII, p.13 Zampetti 1952 Pietro Zampetti, Carlo Crivelli nelle Marche, Urbino 1952 Bovero 1961 A. Bovero, Tutta la Pittura del Crivelli, Milan 1961, p.63 Zampetti 1961 Pietro Zampetti, Carlo Crivelli e i Crivelleschi, Venice 1961 (2 eds.), pp.74, 82 Shapley, 1968: Fern Rusk Shapley, Complete Catalogue of the Samuel H. Kress Collection: Italian Paintings XV-XVI Century, London 1968, p.36 Gore 1964: F. St John Gore, Upton House, The Bearsted Collection: Pictures National Trust, 1964, pp.70-71, no.223 Zampetti 1986 Pietro Zampetti, Carlo Crivelli, Florence 1986, pp.116 and 265-70 Bovero 1975 A. Bovero, L’Opera Completa di Carlo Crivelli, Milan 1975, pp.87-88 Sutton 1979 Denys Sutton, ‘Robert Langton Douglas: XVII: ‘Dramatic Days’’, Apollo, vol.109 (June 1979), pp.474-5 [192-3] Monteroni 2000 Angela Monteroni, ‘Carlo Crivelli e il suo Seguito’, in Valter Curzi, ed., Pittura Veneta nelle Marche, Milan, 2000, pp.121-22 Dunkerton & White 2000 Jill Dunkerton and Raymond White, The Discovery and Identification of an Original Varnish on a Panel by Carlo Crivelli, National Gallery Technical Bulletin, vol.21, 2000, pp.70-76, p.76, n.7 Underdrawings in Renaissance Paintings, National Gallery, David Bomford, ed., exh. cat. 2002, pp.100-101, repd. p.99 Lightown 2004 Ronald Lightbown, Carlo Crivelli, New Haven & London, 2004, p.202, repd. Davies 1961 Martin Davies, The Earlier Italian Schools, National Gallery, London, 1961, p. 154

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