National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of The Nativity Perino del Vaga (artist)
Italian, 1501 - 1547
The Nativity, 1534
oil on panel transferred to canvas
overall: 274.4 x 221.1 cm (108 1/16 x 87 1/16 in.) framed: 302 x 248.9 x 9.8 cm (118 7/8 x 98 x 3 7/8 in.)
Samuel H. Kress Collection
On View
From the Tour: Mannerism
Object 4 of 8


Commissioned by a member of the Baciadonne family for Santa Maria della Consolazione, Genoa, where it remained until the end of the 18th century. Cardinal Joseph Fesch [1763-1839], Paris; (his sale, Rome, 17 March 1845, no. 813); purchased by M. George. William Ward, 11th baron Ward [1817-1885, created 1st earl of Dudley in 1860], Witley Court, Worcestershire, England, by 1849;[1] by inheritance to his son, William Humble Ward [1867-1932], 2nd earl of Dudley, Witley Court; (Dudley sale, Christie, Manson & Woods, London, 25 June 1892, no. 91); purchased by Sir John Charles Robinson [1824-1913], London, for Sir Francis Cook, 1st Bt. [1817-1901], Doughty House, Richmond, Surrey;[2] by inheritance to his son, Sir Frederick Lucas Cook, 2nd Bt. [1844-1920], Doughty House; by inheritance to his son, Sir Herbert Frederick Cook, 3rd Bt. [1868-1939], Doughty House; by inheritance to his son, Sir Francis Frederick Maurice Cook, 4th Bt. [1907-1978], Doughty House, and Cothay Manor, Somerset; sold 1947 or 1948 to (Gualtiero Volterra, London) for (Count Alessandro Contini-Bonacossi, Florence);[3] sold March 1949 to the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, New York;[4] gift 1961 to NGA.

[1] According to G.F. Waagen, Art Treasures of Great Britain, 1854, II:233. The painting was lent by Dudley to the 1857 Manchester exhibition.

[2] Annotated sales catalogue, copy in NGA curatorial files.

[3] See the copy of a receipt in NGA curatorial files. It is undated, but may be placed in 1947, or at the latest 1948, on the basis of its location in the Cook Collection Archive in care of John Somerville, England. Volterra was Contini-Bonacossi's agent in London.

[4] The Kress Foundation made an offer to Contini-Bonacossi on 4 March 1949 for a group of twenty-one paintings, including a "Pierin del Vaga Altar Piece;" the offer was accepted on 10 March 1949 (see copies of correspondence in NGA curatorial files).

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