Polska Akademia Umieje̜tności <Krakau> / Komisja Historii Sztuki [Editor]; Polska Akademia Nauk <Warschau> / Oddział <Krakau> / Komisja Teorii i Historii Sztuki [Editor]
Folia Historiae Artium — NS 18.2020

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Folia Historiae Artium
Seria Nowa, t. 18: 2020/PL ISSN 0071-6723

BARBARA HRYSZKO
Jesuit University Ignatianum

THE ICONOGRAPHY AND DATING
OF THREE MYTHOLOGICAL DRAWINGS
BY ALEXANDRE UBELESKI

The artistic legacy left by Alexandre Ubeleski (1649/1651-
-1718) covers paintings and drawings made with vari-
ous techniques, including interesting red chalk drawings
(Fig. 1 and 2), which have not yet been discussed in detail.1
The attribution of the drawings to Ubeleski has been veri-
fied by the analysis of a signature visible on the reverse of
the first sheet (Fig. 3), the works’ history, their style, and
comparative studies of the painters oeuvre.2 3 This article
presents new findings based on an in-depth analysis of
the form and iconography of the drawings, which allow
for their grouping, the identification of their subject mat-
ter and potential sources of inspiration, their dating, and
the discovery of their ideological meaning. The analysis of
the drawings treated as a series offers an insight into the
nature of Ubeleskis work, and places it in a broader con-
text of not only the arts but also the literature and music
created within the culture of King Louis XIV s court.

1 This article is a separate analysis, the starting point of which was
indicated in the monograph: B. Hryszko, Le Peintre du Roi. Alek-
sander Ubeleski (1649/1651-1718) - malarz polskiego pochodzenia
we Francji i jego dzieła, Kraków, 2016.1 would like to express my
gratitude for assistance in my research to Prof. Pierre Rosenberg
and Lutz Riester.
2 Ubeleskis signature: Alexandre pinx. is one of the five variants
I found during my research. An identical signature, from an
unknown work, was published in: E. Bénézit, Dictionnaire cri-
tique et documentaire des peintres, sculpteurs, dessinateurs et gra-
veurs, vol. 13, Paris, 1999, p. 886. The artists similar signatures can
be found in the following works: The Peasant Dance, The Marriage
of the Virgin, Christ Healing the Sick; see B. Hryszko, Alexan-
dre Ubeleski (Ubelesqui): The Oeuvre of the Painter and Defini-
tion of his Style’, Artibus et Historiae, 71I57,2015, pp. 235, 279-280,
figs. 21, 23, 24.

The drawings were part of the collection of Gilbert
Paignon-Dijonval (1708-1792)? Among the drawings be-
longing to the École Française, the catalogue of this collec-
tion lists three red chalk drawings on paper, each 5 inches
high and 8 inches wide, assigned to Alexandre Ubeliski’
(sic). The subject of the first work was described as Apollo
kissing the shepherdess’ hand, in the background Cupid is
shown holding a mask (Fig. 1), and the titles of the other
two were Diana leaving the heavens to visit Endymion
(Fig. 2) and Bacchus consoling Ariadne.4 Two of these
drawings have been preserved to this day. The first of them
appeared at auction on 25 April 1979 in the Danish Bruun
Rasmussen Auctioneers in Copenhagen (Fig. 1),5 6 while
the other was put up for sale in Kunsthandel Dr. Moeller
in Hamburg in 1991 (Fig. 2)?

3 It was one of the biggest private collections of drawings and prints
created between 1724 and 1792, and included fourteen works by
Alexandre Ubeleski. They are listed in a catalogue published in
1810 by the collector’s heir and grandson, Charles-Gilbert-Terray,
vicomte de Morel-Vindé (1759-1842). Cabinet de M. Paignon Di-
jonval. Etat détaillé et raisonné des dessins et estampes dont il est
composé, ed. by [P. M.] Bénard, Paris, 1810, pp. VI and 126.
4 Cabinet deM. Paignon Dijonval, p. 126 (as in note 3): ‘2911. Apollon
baisant la main d’une bergère; on voit dans le fond l’Amour tenant
un masque: d. à la sanguine; l. [arge] 8 po. [uce] sur 5 po. [uce]....
2915. Diane quittant le ciel pour visiter Endymion. Bacchus conso-
lant Ariane: deux dessins à la sanguine sur papier blanc; l. [arge] 8
po. [uce] sur 5 po. [uce] ’.
5 Drawing no. 556 in the sales catalogue of Bruun Rasmussen de
Copenhague - see P. Rosenberg, ‘Un émule polonais de Le Brun:
Alexandre Ubelesqui’, Artibus et Historiae, 22/11, 1990, p. 186,
note 62.
6 M. Moeller, Meisterzeichnungen, Hamburg, 1991, p. 25.


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