Provenance Research

Philippe Mercier (1689-1760)
The Italian Comedians, ca. 1720-25
Oil on canvas
41 x 50 1/2 in. (104.1 x 128.3 cm)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Edwards, 1947.520

A Commedia dell'arte actor dressed as Pierrot looks at a sleeping woman in the center of the composition. Another woman in the left background looks at Pierrot. Large columns in the background.

Former Attributions:
Jean-Antoine Watteau
French School, 18th century

Alternate Titles:
Woman Asleep


    Count Leopold de Beaufort, Brussels [1]
By at least 1900-1915:   Peter Arrell Brown Widener [1834-1915], Philadelphia, by descent to [2]
1915-June 20-24, 1944:   Joseph E. Widener [1872-1943], Philadelphia, sold at his sale Samuel T. Freeman & Co., Philadelphia, June 20-24, 1944, lot 724 [3]
?-1947:   Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Edwards, Cincinnati, given to
1947-present:   Cincinnati Art Museum

[1] Included on a brass plaque from the frame, CAM conservation files. Also noted in Frick Art Reference Library, correspondence, April 12, 1948.

[2] Published in Catalogue of Paintings forming the Private Collection of P. A. B. Widener, Ashbourne, near Philadelphia, vol 2, Paris: Goupil & Co., 1900, no. 281. Also indicated on a brass plaque from the frame, CAM conservation files.

[3] The auction house has no record of the buyer.

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