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Overview

Physical perfection becomes an expression of sanctity in this statuette. Duquesnoy, a Fleming working in Rome, created monumental sculpture that earned him esteem rivaling that of his great Italian contemporaries Bernini and Algardi. His Roman career began, however, with small carvings in ivory, whose material qualities of luminosity, reception of detail, and appeal to touch inspired the creation of sculptural masterpieces for thousands of years. Duquesnoy's elegantly proportioned yet naturalistic Christ twists in a precariously balanced pose. His anguished face may echo prints from northern Europe. This work offers the finest known rendition of a highly popular design. A clay version depicted in an 18th-century print bore an attribution to Duquesnoy.

Provenance

Private collection, South America; art market, Italy; (Altomani, Milan); sold March 2006 to (Blumka Gallery, New York) and (Julius Böhler Kunsthandlung, Stamberg); sold March 2006 to (Daniel Katz, Ltd., London);[1] sold 21 June 2007 to NGA.

Bibliography
2007
Luchs, Alison. "Attributed to François Duquesnoy, Christ Bound." National Gallery of Art Bulletin, no. 37 (Fall 2007): 17, repro.
2013
Katz, Daniel and Nicholas Penny. Daniel Katz: 45 Years of European Sculpture. London, 2013: 48, no. 13, 49 repro.
2015
"Art for the Nation: The Story of the Patrons' Permanent Fund." National Gallery of Art Bulletin, no. 53 (Fall 2015): 29, repro.