Portrait of a Man Holding a Letter (Origene Salecchi?)
Unknown Italian (Florentine) Artist
32.5 x 22 in. (82.55 x 55.88 cm)
Medium and Support:
Oil on canvas
On loan from a private collection
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).