Signed and dated
Medium and dimensions
Pen, pencil on blue paper558 x 325, the sheet folded twice horizontally
Unidentified seventeenth-century artistverso Robert Adam / James Adam (attributed to)
Unfinished life studies in white and black chalk, showing half the face of a young person with wild hair; beside this is a detail of an eye and an eyebrow. They may be studies by Robert or James Adam that have been taken from plaster casts (see A. A. Tait, Robert Adam: drawings and imagination, Cambridge, 1993, p.19); they may also be related to the series of studies after the antique that Pecheux (1729-1821 ) executed for Robert Adam in 1755 and which were described as '. . . charming . . . ' (see J. Fleming, Robert Adam and His Circle in Edinburgh & Rome, London, 1962, pp.352-3).
In the opinion of A. A. Tait, this drawing relates in time and place or subject to those contained in Adam volume 56. This drawing is possibly French of the early seventeenth-century, and may be for some sort of institutional building. The full-length figure in the central niche is in classical costume, holding a book in one hand. The unfinished life studies on the verso suggest that this drawing may have been acquired abroad in the later 1750s by Robert or James Adam.
Digitisation of the Drawings Collection has been made possible through the generosity of the Leon Levy Foundation
Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural,
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it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance
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