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Objects On Loan

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Portrait of a Man Holding a Letter (Origene Salecchi?)


Artist: Unknown Italian (Florentine) Artist
Date: ca. 1520
16th century
Dimensions: 32.5 x 22 in. (82.55 x 55.88 cm)
Dimensions Extent: unframed
Object Type: Painting
Creation Place: Europe, Italy
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: On loan from a private collection
Accession Number: L2016.10.01
On View: Bellarmine Hall Galleries

This subject of this painting, which has previously been attributed to Rosso Fiorentino, as well as Domenico Puligo and Andrea del Brescianino, is a man depicted in half-length, wearing a wide-sleeved scarlet gown and black stole over a darker doublet. His left hand posed on the dividing parapet, the man holds a letter in his right as he looks directly at the viewer. A green curtain forms the painting’s background.

The inscription added at the upper left, “ORIGINES SALECCHIUS PHILOSOPHUS / OBIIT ANNO MDXXVIII,” identifies him as the “philosopher” Origene Salecchi and gives the year of his death as 1528. Salecchi, a native of the Emilian city of Faenza, served as one of the ambassadors to the papal court during the papacies of Adrian VI (1522-23) and Clement VII (1523-34).





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