Meeting of David and Abigail
29 cm x 42.7 cm (11 7/16 in. x 16 13/16 in.)
(Genoa, Italy, 1627 - 1703, Genoa, Italy)
Medium and Support:
Pen and brown ink with brush and brown wash over black chalk, squared in red chalk
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, The Suida-Manning Collection, 2017
Synthesizing several Genoese strains, from the imported Flemish to the native late Mannerist, Piola developed a style of considerable attractiveness, perfect regularity, and tremendous success in the production of altarpieces and grand-scale secular decorations. No less prolific as a draftsman, he is reported to have left 4,000 drawings to his family, and even today his fluidly drawn, smoothly modeled pen-and-wash studies seem ubiquitous. This is an unusually vigorous early study, with its rhythms more staccato, its illumination more intense, and its recollections of earlier Genoese pen-and-wash studies, of Cambiaso and Benso, more pronounced. The Collection counts another two drawings and four paintings by the artist.