21 January to 30 March, 2003
Seventy works dating from the sixteenth to the early nineteenth centuries explore religious and secular themes and trace the development of drawing in Italy from the Renaissance to the advent of Neoclassicism. In the sixteenth century, the significance of drawing as the point of departure not only for painting, but for the arts of sculpture and architecture as well, took on new importance with the humanistic values of the Renaissance. The growing emphasis on naturalism in art led artists to draw from life (the human figure at rest or in motion) almost exclusively. The drawings in this exhibition provide a window into the artist's mind as an idea was explored from its conception to its ultimate form, from preliminary sketches to highly finished drawings. Works by artists such as the Carracci, Reni, da Cortona, Piranesi, and Tiepolo reveal the intellectual, psychological, and spiritual processes that guided the artist's hand.
Organized and sponsored by the National Gallery of Canada.