:host { --enviso-primary-color: #00BAFF; --enviso-secondary-color: #00BAFF; font-family: 'boijmans-font', Arial, Helvetica,sans-serif; } .enviso-basket-button-wrapper { position: relative; top: 5px; } .enviso-btn { font-size: 22px; } .enviso-basket-button-items-amount { font-size: 12px; line-height: 1; background: #F18700; color: white; border-radius: 50%; width: 24px; height: 24px; min-width: 0; display: flex; align-items: center; justify-content: center; text-align: center; font-weight: bold; padding: 0; top: -13px; right: -12px; } Previous Next Facebook Instagram Twitter Pinterest Tiktok Linkedin Back to top
Study for St Jerome

Study for St Jerome

Carlo Caliari (in circa 1594)

Ask anything


Thank you. Your question has been submitted.

Unfortunately something has gone wrong while sending your question. Please try again.

Request high-res image

More information


Title Study for St Jerome
Material and technique Black and red chalk, heightened with white, on blue paper
Object type
Drawing > Two-dimensional object > Art object
Location This object is in storage
Dimensions Height 232 mm
Width 300 mm
Artists Draughtsman: Carlo Caliari
Previously attributed: Jacopo Bassano (Jacopo da Ponte)
Accession number I 54 (PK)
Credits Bruikleen / Loan: Stichting Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen 1940 (voormalige collectie / former collection Koenigs)
Department Drawings & Prints
Acquisition date 1940
Creation date in circa 1594
Watermark half oval, empty (17 x 39 mm, part fragment of watermark on right edge, vH, 11P)
Inscriptions '156 . Agusera B.B. no: 68' (verso, centre, pen and brown ink), '26' (on old removed blue backing paper, above left, pencil, underlined)
Collector Collector / Franz Koenigs
Mark Z. Sagredo (L.2103a) 'inv. B.B. no: 68', F.W. Koenigs (L.1023a on removed backing paper)
Provenance Zaccaria Sagredo (1653-1729, L.2103a, inv. 'B.B. no: 68'), Venice; - ; Franz W. Koenigs (1881-1941, L.1023a), Haarlem, acquired in 1927 (Jacopo Bassano); D.G. van Beuningen (1877-1955), Rotterdam, acquired with the Koenigs Collection in 1940 and donated to the Foundation Museum Boymans
Exhibitions Pordenone 2000, no. 47; Rotterdam 2009-2010 (coll 2 kw 5)
Internal exhibitions De Collectie Twee - wissel V, Prenten & Tekeningen (2009)
Research Italian Drawings 1400-1600
Literature Tietze/Tietze-Conrat 1944, p. 46 under no. A 103; Arslan 1960, p. 176 (possibly Jacopo Bassano); Rearick 1980, p. 56; Byam Shaw 1981, p. 37; Byam Shaw 1983, p. 237 nn. 5-6 under no. 236 (as by a pupil); Rearick 2001, p. 180; Whistler 2004, p. 376, ill. 5 (Carletto); Meijer 2017, p. 96, n. 37, p. 101, fig. 14
Highlight > Painting technique > Technique > Material and technique
Geographical origin Italy > Southern Europe > Europe
Place of manufacture Venice > Veneto region > Italy > Southern Europe > Europe

Entry catalogue Italian Drawings 1400-1600

Author: Sarah Vowles

Carlo Caliari, 'Coronation of the Virgin with Saints', c.1594, oil on canvas, 400 x 190 cm, Diocese of Vicenza. Photo chiesacattalocia.it/BeWeb

Refined and precise, this study of a nude man is a preparatory drawing for the figure of St Jerome in Carlo Caliari’s altarpiece of the Coronation of the Virgin with Saints Liberale, Fortunato and Jerome (fig.). Painted in the final years of Carlo’s life, it was destined for the high altar of the Duomo at Cologna Veneta, near Vicenza, where it remains today. Rearick has observed that Carlo would have been able to draw on ample material from the family’s studio archives, for his father Paolo Veronese (1528-1588) had completed an altarpiece of the same subject for the Venetian church of Ognissanti.[1]

The contours of the figure have been laid down in black chalk, with highlights added in white chalk to articulate the musculature of the saint’s wiry back. This combination of chalks on blue paper was familiar and widespread in Veronese’s studio, but Carlo also blended in areas of red chalk to suggest the warmth of human flesh, most visible at the back of the saint’s neck, on his shoulders and on the dimples at his elbows. Veronese himself rarely used coloured chalks. This almost painterly approach to drawing was characteristic of the Bassano family, in whose workshop, under the tutelage of Francesco Bassano (1549-1592), Carlo carried out a period of training in the mid-to-late 1580s. It is likely that Bassano influenced the naturalism evident in Carlo’s study of this powerful, sinewy old man.

Carlo’s use of coloured chalks is at its most visible in his portrait drawings, such as those of the Venetian historian and statesman Paolo Paruta (1540-1598) in London,[2] Dublin,[3] and the heads of an old man and a cleric in New York.[4] The closest comparison to this drawing, however, is the softer, more subtle study of a man’s back, seen from a very similar angle, now in Paris.[5] The Paris drawing has often been given to the Bassano family, showing the extent to which the young Carlo absorbed their lessons. Thanks to the connection between the present drawing and The Coronation of the Virgin, however, there can be little doubt that this comes from Carlo’s own hand. The meticulous approach to detail, which picks out every undulation of muscle, and carefully defines the creases on the back of the old man’s neck, is also evident in Carlo’s portraits, and sets him apart from the broader, less sophisticated draughtsmanship of his uncle and assistant Benedetto Caliari (1538-1598).

Like many of the other drawings from Veronese’s studio in Rotterdam, this was formerly in the collection of the Sagredo family. The inscription ‘Aequat’ on the verso was added by Doge Nicolò Sagredo (1606-1676), the founder of that collection. It was his custom to annotate drawings with descriptions of their technique: either ‘lapis’ for chalk, or ‘aequat’ or ‘aquesta’ for pen and wash. As is clear, he accidentally misidentified the technique of the present drawing.


[1] Pordenone 2000, no. 47. Paolo Veronese’s painting The Coronation of the Virgin is now in the Accademia, Venice. For a related drawing in Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, see I 46.

[2] British Museum, inv. 1946,0713.23

[3] National Gallery of Ireland, inv. NGI.2715

[4] Metropolitan Museum of Art, inv. 1975.131.4 and inv. 2002.84.

[5] Fondation Custodia, inv. 7217.

Show research Italian Drawings 1400-1600
Show catalogue entry Hide catalogue entry

All about the artist

Carlo Caliari

Venetië 1570 - Venetië 1596

Bekijk het volledige profiel