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St John the Evangelist (after Jacopo Sansovino)

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St John the Evangelist (after Jacopo Sansovino) 16th century

Not on display

The figure in this study corresponds closely to Jacopo Sansovino’s bronze relief-sculpture of St John the Evangelist on the sacristy door of the Basilica of San Marco, Venice. This drawing varies slightly from Sansovino’s sculpture, and the handling is very different from other figure studies by him, making an attribution to Sansovino himself doubtful. It is most likely that another accomplished artist admired the figure and wished to record it, possibly with the intention of using it elsewhere, as the drawing is squared for transfer. The use of red chalk and red wash was not common practice in Venice, and is more consistent with the work of draughtsmen from Lombardy.

Glossary Open


The ability to draw skilfully, often refers to technical drawing.

Red chalk

A type of chalk containing the mineral hematite, a form of iron oxide, that is used for drawing.


A form of sculpture where the image or design projects from a flat surface types of which include, bas-relief or low relief.


Even grid lines are drawn over an image, usually a drawing. This is done to facilitate easier transfer or enlargement of the design.


A transparent layer of diluted ink or watercolour.

Draughtsmanship, Red chalk, Relief, Squared, Wash


  • Acc. No. D 1896
  • Medium Red chalk and wash on buff paper, laid down (squared in black chalk)
  • Size 26.20 x 12.30 cm
  • Credit Lady Murray of Henderland Gift 1860 as a memorial of her husband, Lord Murray of Henderland