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Figure - Crucifix figure

Crucifix figure

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Italy (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1599 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Gualterio, Giovanni Antonio (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Partly painted ivory

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Dr W.L.Hildburgh F.S.A.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This is an unusually early post-medieval ivory. The carving of the torso, and to a lesser extent the head and loincloth, suggests this piece is by the Italian ivory carver Giovanni Antonio Gualterio (active Rome 1582-1600), who came from Gaeta, south of Rome, and who specialised in carving ivory crucifixes. Many of his works seem to have been exported to Spain, which may explain why coloured pigment is to be seen on some of them. Here the loincloth, as well as the red pigment for blood, are typical of Gualterio's work. The scale of the present piece coincides with fragment of a crucifix in the Grünes Gewolbe in Dresden dated 1599, suggesting an approximate date for this object.

Physical description

Torso of the crucified Christ, his head down on his right shoulder, and eyes closed. The figure is fully carved at the back. The arms and lower half of the legs are missing. Dowel holes remain for the arms.

Place of Origin

Italy (made)


ca. 1599 (made)


Gualterio, Giovanni Antonio (made)

Materials and Techniques

Partly painted ivory


Height: 13.5 cm

Object history note

Given by Dr W.L. Hildburgh F.S.A. in 1927.

Descriptive line

Crucifix figure (fragmentary), ivory, by Giovanni Antonio Gualterio, Italy, ca. 1599

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Longhurst, Margaret H. Catalogue of Carvings in Ivory. London: Published under the Authority of the Board of Education, 1929, Part II, p. 109, pl. XC
Theuerkauff, C. Die Bildwerke der Skulpturengalerie Berlin. 2. Die Bildwerke in Elfenbein des 16. - 19. Jahrhunderts. Berlin, 1986, p. 386 note. 9.
Dieulafoy, M. La statuaire polychrome en Espagne du XIIe au XVe siècle Aragon et Castille. Monuments et mémoires de la Fondation Eugène Piot. 10, 1903, pp. 171-216
Trusted, Marjorie, Baroque & Later Ivories, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2013, cat. no. 284, pp. 290, 1




Carved; Painted

Subjects depicted

Crucifix; The Passion


Sculpture; Christianity; Religion


Sculpture Collection

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