This object is currently on display in room 105 as part of Mr. Pergolesi's Curious Things. See our image rights statement.

 

Object Timeline

1980

  • We acquired this object.

2021

2022

Drawing, Ornament Design, Portland Vase and Cameos

This is a Drawing. It was created by Michel Angelo Pergolesi. It is dated 1776 and we acquired it in 1980. Its medium is pen and ink, brush and watercolor over graphite on laid paper. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

In his watercolor drawings, Pergolesi transforms real antiquities into decorative motifs. This drawing includes, at its center, an image of the so-called Portland Vase, a famous ancient Roman object brought to England in the early 1780s. Pergolesi, however, created this drawing from a monochrome illustration a few years before the vase arrived in England. He incorrectly assumed the vase would have the same black-and-red coloration characteristic of Roman terracotta vessels, like the large krater in a case nearby.

It is credited Gift of Unknown Donor.

It is signed

"1776: Pergolesi Del: et Pinx Londini"

Cite this object as

Drawing, Ornament Design, Portland Vase and Cameos; Michel Angelo Pergolesi (Italian, active ca. 1760–1801); pen and ink, brush and watercolor over graphite on laid paper; Gift of Unknown Donor; 1980-32-1463

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18506207/ |title=Drawing, Ornament Design, Portland Vase and Cameos |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=7 December 2022 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>