FILIPPO PEDRINI (Bologna 1763 – 1856 Bologna)
Filippo Pedrini (Bologna 1763 – 1856 Bologna)
Academy Study of a Male Nude
Black chalk, heightened with white chalk, watermark anchor in an oval, 428 x 315 mm (16.9 x 12.4 inch)
Inscribed on the verso: ‘Filippo Pedrini Profesore’
Private collection, Germany
Filippo was the son of the painter Domenico Pedrini (1728-1800). He was first taught by his father, and continued his studies at the Accademia Clementina in Bologna under Ubaldo Gandolfi (1728-1781) and Gaetano Gandolfi, while Mauro Gandolfi was a fellow pupil. Pedrini remained anchored to the Gandolfi family's artistic style all his life. His first paintings of St Barbara and St Thomas Aquinas for the church of St Bartolomeo in Bologna date from 1779, in the period when he probably began collaborating with his father. In 1790 he became a member of the Accademia Clementina, and in 1821 he was elected to the Accademia Pontificia in Rome.
Around the year 1800 Pedrini began painting frescoes. His style was increasingly influenced by the Gandolfi, although it had a clearly individual character. Among his more successful works in Bologna were the Allegory of Victory and the Muses for the Palazzo Comunale and ceilings in the Palazzo Hercolani. In these works he demonstrated familiarity with the new ideas of his former fellow student Felice Giani. Numerous other works by Pedrini can still be seen in the churches of Bologna.
Our drawing, which shows a virtuoso mastery of draftsmanship, clearly shows the influence of Ubaldo Gandolfi, in his turn influenced by earlier Bolognese masters such as Guercino and the Carracci. Although the verso is inscribed with Pedrini’s later title of professore, it probably dates from his days as a student of Gandolfi. A similar drawing of a male academy is preserved in the Pinacoteca Nazionale, Bologna.1
1. Inv. no. 3699; 438 x 315 mm; Marzia Faietti and Alessandro Zacchi, Figure. Disegni dal Cinquecento all'Ottocento nella Pinacoteca di Bologna, Milan 1998, no. 122, pp. 336-37, ill.