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Lot 43 - Francesco Noletti, Still Life with Carpet and Chest, 17th C.

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Oil on canvas, relined
Francesco Noletti, also called Il Maltese (c. 1611–1654) – Italian painter, born in Malta, has long been known as Francesco Fieravino within the art market
Verso on the original frame with an old label of the art gallery 'Pietro del Vecchio', Leipzig, numbered 'Nr. 5584' (barely legible)
This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity by Dr. Gianluca Bocchi dated October 24, 2016; the work will be listed in his forthcoming monograph
Dimensions: 97 x 131 cm
Original gilt stucco frame: 114 x 147 cm
Provenance: in the 19th c. acquired in the well-known art gallery Pietro del Vecchio in Leipzig; family-owned since the late 19th c.; private collection, Hesse
Additional literature: Pittori di natura morta a Roma. Artisti italiani 1630-1750, edited by G. Bocchi e U. Bocchi, 2005, p. 357-397

The artist is known for his eye-catching still lifes with carpets: The precious objects of the painting emerge from the dark of the background which is characterized by the plasticity and detail of the carpet and the chest as well as of the interplay of light and shadow. The Turkish carpet as well as the chest and the gold-lined greenish curtain belong to the key motifs of the work of the artist.

A work in the Musée des Beaux-Arts in Nancy as well as one in the Gallery Strossmayer in Zagreb show identical compositions. Further there are obvious parallels to the known painting 'Composition with jewelry box and curtain on Turkish carpet' which had been sold attributed to Francesco Fieravino by Sotheby´s in London on the 5th of July 1984 (lot 375).


The painting is in good condition, consistent with age. Overall with tiny craquelure and edges and corners show rubbed spots due to the frame. Scattered overpaintings can be mainly seen under UV light in the background and to the edges. The frame shows usual signs of age and wear as well as several tears overall and loss of material to the outer edges.

Francesco Noletti (c. 1611–1654)

The Italian painter Francesco Noletti who is also known under the name Francesco Fieravino was probably born in Malta. Because of his origin he has been called 'Il Maltese'. Researchers assume that the artist went to Rome around 1640 where he worked for the families Colonna, Buonvisi, Barberini, Avila, Triti and Costaguti. Furthermore, duke Francesco Cesarini was a patron of the artist. Noletti mainly painted eye-catching still lifes with carpets which are characterized by the diversity of objects exceeding the traditional genre represented by still lifes with flowers and fruits. There are no signed paintings known by the artist. But a lot of works were identified by researchers based on the presented objects, thus mainly by reference to the carpets. (msc)

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