Description & Technical information

The present sheet depicts the upper floor loggia of the circular courtyard of the Palazzo (or Villa) Farnese at Caprarola, designed for Cardinal Alessandro Farnese by the architect Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola and constructed between 1559 and 1573. Hubert Robert is known to have visited the town of Caprarola, situated some sixty kilometres north of Rome in the province of Viterbo, twice; one in 1761 with the Abbé de Saint-Non and again in 1764, when he accompanied the financier and amateur artist Claude-Henri Watelet.

A painting of the circular staircase of the Palazzo Farnese at Caprarola is in the Louvre. Two other drawings of Caprarola are found in a Roman sketchbook, used by Robert during his period in Italy, which belonged to the Marquis de Ganay and the Comtesse de Béhague and was broken up at auction in Monaco in 1989.

Laid down on a 19th century mount.

Medium: Red chalk
Dimensions: 45.7 x 32.8 cm (18 x 12⁷/₈ inches)
Provenance: Anonymous sale, London, Christie’s, 3 April 1984, lot 84
Galerie Cailleux, Paris, in 1985
Anonymous sale, Paris, Espace Pierre Cardin [AuctionArt-Rémy Le Fur], 27 April 2012, lot 120
Nicolas Schwed, Paris, in 2013
Private collection
Galerie Eric Coatalem, Paris
Private collection, London.
Literature: Jean de Cayeux, Les Hubert Robert de la Collection Veyrenc au Musée de Valence, Valence, 1985, p.100, fig.17 and p.192, under no.46; Guillaume Faroult and Catherine Voiriot, Hubert Robert 1733-1808: Un peintre visionnaire, exhibition catalogue, Paris, 2016, p.138, under no.9, fig.58.

Categories: Paintings, Drawings & Prints