Sep 17, 2010

Three Studies of Angels for a Pendentive (recto)

Three Studies of Angels for a Pendentive (recto)


Part of a set. See all set records

Cristoforo Roncalli

(Italian, 1552–1626)

Red chalk; squared in red chalk (left half), framing lines in red chalk

Support: Beige(1) laid paper

Sheet: 27.8 x 35.3 cm (10 15/16 x 13 7/8 in.)

Andrew R. and Martha Holden Jennings Fund 1989.45.a



In 1590, a generation after Michelangelo’s death, the dome he designed for Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome was finally completed. In 1597 Pope Clement VIII commissioned the mosaic decoration of the interior of the dome, choosing Cristoforo Roncalli in part because of his training in Florence, an origin he shared with Michelangelo. Roncalli made this preparatory drawing for the angels that would appear at each side of the four Evangelists in the trapezoidal spaces where the dome meets the supporting arches, called pendentives. Roncalli practiced rendering the foreshortened human form in three studies across the sheet, which are early stages of the design.

See also

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.