Figure Studies (recto); Figure Studies (verso) (Verso: Figure Studies (post-conservation) / Calculations, Inscription details)

Karel Škréta

The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum
Los Angeles, United States

As he worked out compositional arrangements and poses of figures, Karel Skréta filled this sheet with studies of the Virgin and Child adored by saints. On the recto, figures pour across the page almost cinematically, their flowing rhythm lending the entire sheet the feeling of being a single idea. Two compositional studies on the verso display Skréta's sensitivity to the ability of a few well-chosen lines to describe everything. At the left, his economical, delicate lines suggest drapery, relationships, and form. On the right, he made further reductions by gently going over selected red chalk lines with pen and ink. The juxtaposition of pen-and-ink with red chalk also shows how different media affected the quality of Skréta's line.


  • Title: Figure Studies (recto); Figure Studies (verso) (Verso: Figure Studies (post-conservation) / Calculations, Inscription details)
  • Creator: Karel Skréta
  • Date Created: about 1660
  • Physical Dimensions: 32.5 × 39.4 cm (12 13/16 × 15 1/2 in.)
  • Type: Drawing
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Red chalk (recto); red chalk and brown ink (verso)
  • Terms of Use: Open Content
  • Number: 88.GB.52
  • Culture: Bohemian
  • Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
  • Creator Display Name: Karel Skréta (Bohemian, 1610 - 1674)
  • Classification: Drawings (Visual Works)

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