Oct 7, 2010

Study of Hands

Study of Hands


Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres

(French, 1780–1867)

Graphite with traces of white heightening on ivory laid paper

Support: Ivory laid paper

Sheet: 31.2 x 23.6 cm (12 5/16 x 9 5/16 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 2003.37

Did you know?

Ingres executed many studies for each of his stained glass designs, from preliminary sketches such as this one to full-scale cartoons.


This sheet of studies was made as a preparatory design for a series of stained glass windows for the Chapel of Saint Ferdinand in Paris. Here, Jean- Auguste-Dominique Ingres sketched four sets of hands that seem to cascade down the page in one rhythmic motion, masterfully illustrating the beauty of mise en page. In his use of graphite, Ingres alluded to the metalpoint drawings of Raphael, intentionally channeling the Renaissance master.

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