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1680 ca.
Material and technique
oil on canvas
98 x 73 cm
Alessandro Zuccari
The animals are the true protagonists of Philipp Peter Roos’s paintings and in fact are often depicted almost in the form of portraits. The upper section of the canvas shows the sky at sunset and the outline of mountains, their colour blending with that of the clouds. In the foreground, a herd of goats, a dog and a shepherd looking out towards the viewer are depicted in sharp chiaroscuro.
The painting, like its companion, reveals analogies with the work of the Genoese painter Giovanni Battista Castiglione, known as ‘Il Grechetto’, and of the group of the Bamboccianti, suggesting that it can be dated around 1680.
Rosa da Tivoli contributed significantly to the development of the Roman campagna landscape by introducing a genre based on a highly personalized interpretation of the pastoral theme. The depiction of groups of animals, notably sheep and goats but also cattle and horses, in fact took precedence over not only elements of the landscape but also human figures. Even where a shepherd appears next to the flock or herd, as in this painting, the figure does not draw attention to itself, leaving the scene to the animals depicted in their natural environment.
Shepherd with Animals
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