European Decor & Design Online
By or After Barthel Beham (German, 1502-1540)
Two Versions of Titus Graccus Later printings, one image reversed; titled in a banner in each print u.c., one faintly dated in the plate, both with an unknown collector's stamp on the reverse.
Engravings on paper, sheet sizes to 2 1/8 x 11 1/4 in. (5.5 x 28.5 cm), matted, unframed.
Condition: Trimmed, creasing, mended tears, one a pale impression.
N.B. These two prints are mirror images of one another, although in one the outside-most figure of a stone-wielding man is cropped off and cross hatching in the sky is incomplete. (Its measurements are 5.5 x 28.1 cm.) The central banners are also handled differently.
The subject, Tiberius Gracchus, was the grandson of Scipio Africanus, who led the Roman freemen in a revolt against aristocratic landowners who practiced slave labor. He was killed with 300 of his followers in a massacre in 133 BC.
Barthel's long, narrow prints of battle scenes emulated the relief sculpture on antique sarcophagi and also reflected influential Italian works, such as the battle scenes of Antonio Pollaiuolo. Here, the fighting between a large number of nude men, some on horseback and armed with arrows and swords, displays the artist's ability to portray the human form at all angles within a highly complex composition.
Items may have wear and tear, imperfections, or the effects of aging. Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.