Christ Child and the Young Saint John the Baptist in a Landscape
19 cm x 24.2 cm (7 1/2 in. x 9 1/2 in.)
(Bologna, 1578 - 1660, Bologna)
Medium and Support:
Oil on copper
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Suida-Manning Collection, 2017
Albani was a principal among the group of Bolognese painters who followed Annibale Carracci to Rome just after 1600. Until Carracci’s death in 1609, these painters served as executors of his designs for a series of major projects, thereby establishing a rationally ordered and ideally formed alternative to Caravaggio’s raw naturalism. In the second decade, Albani in particular tended toward the historical example of Raphael and produced works of an increasingly light, pretty manner. Albani’s production after his return to Bologna in 1617 would feature small scale mythological and allegorical works that represent a rather superficial, if at the time very popular, interpretation of early Baroque classicism.
This miniature devotional work is perfectly character-istic of that later production. It is a lovely object in which Carracci’s grand proposition is reduced not only in scale but in idea to an easy and appealing formula