Three studies of a female Figure
  • Abraham Bloemaert
  • Gorinchem ca. 1565 - 1651 Utrecht
  • Three studies of a female Figure, ca. 1610
  • Red chalk, partly heightened with white, on creme paper, framing lines, numbered on the upper right: 147, collector’s stamp on the lower right (Molinier, Lugt 2917), on the verso: two studies of a young man
  • 228 × 154 mm
André Giroux, Paris (1801-1879), no. 147
his sale with Delteil, Paris 1904 (lot 175)
Charles Molinier, Toulouse (1845-1910)
Sotheby’s, London 1964, July 8th (lot 53)
Private collection, Paris (2013)
Jaap Bolton: Abraham Bloemaert - The Drawings, Leiden 2007, no. 1135, vol. I, p. 361, ill. 1135, vol. II, p. 388
K.G. Boon: The Netherlandish and German Drawings of the XVth and XVIth Centuries of the Frits Lugt Collection, Paris 1992, vol. I, p. 29, note 2

This double-sided study sheet shows, in exemplary fashion, Bloemaert’s masterly conception and graphic execution of the human figure. On the obverse, the artist has sketched the same model in three different positions, already modelling light and shadows precisely through his use of detailed white heightening. Although the artist’s graphic oeuvre surpasses by far the number of his paintings, one can in this case assume that he already had this shift across media in mind, for all three of the movements traced on this sheet are repeated in the painting The Resurrection of Lazarus (Fig.1). They appear in the painting as the three awestruck eyewitnesses to the miracle. Bloemaert also used the hand studies on the right edge of our drawing for the hands of the kneeling old man who takes the right hand of Lazarus as he springs back to life.