• green and purple fruit on branch with leaves
    Pierre-Joseph Redouté (1759–1840)
    Plum Branches Intertwined, 1802–4
    Watercolor on vellum
    12 9/16 x 10 3/8 in. (31.9 x 26.4 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb

    Redouté's lyrical arrangement of plum branches may have been preparatory for an illustrated volume on Empress Josephine's gardens at Malmaison, although this sheet was never engraved for publication. In delicate washes of blue, green, and gold, the artist portrays the fruits' subtle gradations of tone and conjures the powdery "bloom" coating their skins. Using a visual trope beloved by Dutch and Flemish still-life painters, he adds droplets of water to the golden plum at the forefront, implying its fresh retrieval from the garden.

  • drawing of interior with doorway at center
    Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863)
    Moroccan Interior, 1832
    Watercolor and gouache over graphite
    3 13/16 x 5 7/8 in. (9.7 x 14.9 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb

    This drawing belonged to one of seven sketchbooks that Delacroix filled with figural and architectural studies during a six-month trip to North Africa in 1832. His loosely rendered view of the novel shapes and bold hues of a Moroccan interior is augmented by written annotations of the colors he observed—"vert," "rouge," and "bleu." After returning to France, Delacroix would rely on his sketches for the Orientalist paintings he produced throughout the rest of his career.

  • drawing of trees and pond

    Pierre-Étienne-Théodore Rousseau (1812–1867)
    Pond at the Edge of a Wood, 1853
    Pencil on paper
    7 1/2 x 12 13/16 in. (19.1 x 32.5 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    Rousseau depicts the transitional space between a wood and a sunny clearing—a motif he often revisited in his late work. Through swift hatching and short flecks of the pencil, he creates a texture of lush vegetation and evokes the play of light and shadow across the scene. As a leader of the Barbizon school of artists, Rousseau advocated sketching en plein air, and the present sheet, though remarkably detailed, may have been finished entirely outdoors.

  • sketch of nude male with sword

    Edgar Degas (1834–1917)
    Study of a Male Nude with a Sword, ca. 1856–59
    Graphite on rose colored wove paper
    11 x 8 1/8 in. (27.9 x 20.6 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    This striding figure may be modeled after one of the monumental horsemen in the Piazza del Quirinale in Rome, which Degas visited as a young artist during an extended stay in Italy. His hard, graphic line recalls the draftsmanship of Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, whom he much admired. At the upper left, Degas repeats the figure's left thigh and labels its individual muscles, probably drawing on knowledge of écorché models or anatomy demonstrations.

  • sketch of man in robes holding book

    Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (1696–1770)
    Young Man Holding a Book, ca. 1758
    Pen, brown ink and brown wash on paper
    8 1/2 x 5 1/2 in. (21.6 x 14 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    With economical touches of the pen and brush, the Venetian artist Giovanni Battista Tiepolo—a master of the ink medium—deftly conveys this standing male figure's form, features, and placement in space. The work most likely belongs to a series of drawings of clothed figures known as the Sole Figure Vestite, which the artist produced for reference, experimentation, and the demonstration of his virtuosic technique.

  • oil painting of older man in top hat

    George Stubbs (1724–1806)
    Portrait of Warren Hastings, ca. 1791
    Watercolor over graphite
    5 3/8 x 4 5/16 in. (13.7 x 10.9 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    Using the same careful precision that characterizes his animal and anatomical studies, Stubbs portrays the features and fine clothing of Warren Hastings, the first governor-general of India. This work most likely served as the model for a portrait engraving of Hastings, published in 1795 after his exoneration from charges of corruption. It is one of the few drawings by the artist in America outside of the Yale Center for British Art, New Haven.

  • drawing of horseman on ground ensnared by serpent

    Henry Fuseli (1741–1825)
    Fallen Horseman Attacked by a Monstrous Serpent (recto), ca. 1800
    Pen and brown ink over black chalk on laid paper
    15 x 11 11/16 in. (38.1 x 29.7 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    The unseated horseman ensnared by a monstrous serpent is the hero Siegfried of the Niebelungenlied, a medieval German epic poem that provided rich source material for the Swiss-born Fuseli. Dynamic, twisted forms, energetic pen lines, and dramatic shadows in wash emphasize the intensity of the struggle. Another ink drawing on the reverse of this sheet, which has partially bled through to the front, depicts the biblical figure Job tormented by Satan.

  • sketch of man's head with beard

    William Blake (1757–1827)
    Owen Glendower, ca. 1820
    Graphite on laid paper
    9 1/8 x 7 1/8 in. (23.1 x 18 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    Drawing on his powerful skills of invention, Blake envisions the rugged features and stern gaze of the medieval Welsh nobleman and revolutionary Owen Glendower, whose countenance he renders with flowing, sinuous lines. The sheet belongs to a series of "visionary heads" by Blake and his associates, whose enthusiasm for the realm of the imagination would become a hallmark of the British Romantic tradition.

  • chalk drawing of two men holding crown for burial

    David Wilkie (1785–1841)
    Study of Two Figures (for The Burial of the Scottish Regalia), ca. 1832
    Black, red and brown chalk with touches of blue, pink, peach and white gouache on brown wove paper
    14 3/8 x 18 3/8 in. (36.6 x 46.7 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    In this study for an unrealized painting, Wilkie—best known for his history subjects—dramatizes the 1652 burial of Scottish royal treasure for safeguarding from Oliver Cromwell's forces. The unfinished state of the drawing heightens the visibility of Wilkie's rapid yet highly descriptive use of line, shadow, and highlight, while also augmenting the suspense of the narrative, which ends at a pregnant moment beside the void of the sheet at left.

  • watercolor of five otterhounds in pursuit on riverbank

    Edwin Henry Landseer (1802–1873)
    Otterhounds, 1838–44
    Watercolor and gouache on wove paper with graphite framing lines
    11 1/2 x 17 7/8 in. (29.2 x 45.5 cm)
    Bequest of Charles A. Ryskamp, 2010
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    A thorough understanding of anatomy and behavior informed Landseer's animal studies, for which he was highly regarded during his lifetime. His portrayal of otterhounds pursuing their quarry along a riverbank demonstrates his sensitivity to the individual appearance and movement of each creature, as well as to their mutual harmony as a pack, emphasized by their tight groupings and the unifying pattern of fine watercolor and gouache strokes that describe their shaggy coats.

  • drawing of clouds

    John Constable (1776–1837)
    Cloud Studies, ca. 1822
    Oil on paper, laid down on board
    11 1/2 × 19 in. (29.2 × 48.3 cm)
    Bequest of Henrietta E. S. Lockwood in memory of her father and mother, Ellery Sedgwick and Mabel Cabot Sedgwick, 2000
    Photo Michael Bodycomb


    Charles Ryskamp was instrumental in bringing this pair of oil sketches into the permanent collection in 2000. The works belong to a group of plein-air studies of clouds painted by Constable over a series of summers in Hampstead, an area in north London. These spontaneous yet keenly observed views of atmospheric conditions, here ranging from calm to threatening, informed the artist's highly finished studio paintings, such as Salisbury Cathedral from the Bishop's Garden (1826), on view in the Library.

  • portrait of Charles Ryskamp

    Cecil Beaton (1904–1980)
    Portraits of Charles Ryskamp, 1969
    Gelatin silver prints
    Collection of Thomas L. Lloyd
    Courtesy of the Cecil Beaton Studio Archive at Sotheby's

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