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A Philosopher, probably Euclid



On display in C204

oil paintcanvaspainting

Artwork Details

Creation Date
oil on canvas
Object Types
paintings, oil paintings

49-1/8 x 38-7/8 in. (canvas) 56-7/8 x 46-9/16 x 3 in. (framed, not glazed)

Mark Description

Inscribed lower left (on image of document under figure's left hand) in black paint: Jusepe de Ribera español | F. 1637 [numerals underlined]

Accession Number
Credit Line

The Clowes Collection

Public Domain

European Painting and Sculpture Before 1800

Color Palette

Commissioned from Ribera in 1636 by Karl Eusebius von Liechtenstein [1611-1684], Schloss Feldsberg (now in Czech Republic) via his agents Lorenzo Cambi and Simone Verzone;{1} By descent within the family of the princes of Liechtenstein, Vaduz, Liechtenstein; Sold to (Newhouse Galleries, New York) in 1954;{2} G,H.A. Clowes [1877-1958], Indianapolis, in 1955; Clowes Fund Collection, Indianapolis, since 1958; On long-term loan to the Indianapolis Museum of Art since 1971 (C10066); Given to the Indianapolis Museum of Art, now the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields, in 2000 (2000.345). ------- {1} In 1983 Eduardo Nappi, in his article ”Pittori del ‘600 a Napoli: Notizie inedited dai documenti dell’Archivio storico del Banco di Napoli,” in Ricerche sul ‘600 napoletano, Milan 1983, pp. 73-87, published information documenting Ribera’s commission which he had located in the archives of the Banco dello Spirito Santo, Naples. See also, Craig Felton, “Ribera’s ‘Philosophers’ for the Prince of Liechtenstein, The Burlington Magazine, volume 128, no. 1004 (November 1986): pp. 785-789 who, following Nappi, transcribes the archival notation as: Banco dello Spirito Santo, giornale del 1636, matr. 270, partita di ducati 100, estinta il 7 maggio. A Lorenzo Cambi e Simone Verzone D. 100. E per lui a Gioseppe de Ribera, dite se li pagano per ordine del conte Carlo Felesbergh et esserno in conto di D. 500 per il valore di dodici quadri d’altezza e di palmi cinque e palmi quattro di larghezza in ognuno dei qualci ci ha da essere dipinto un filosofo di sua propria mano che ha pigliato a fare per servito di don Carlo Felisbergh et quelli han da consegnare a loro fra sei mesi et mancando de consignare debbia restituire tutto il denaro ad ogni loro piacere. The prince is identified here as “Carlo Felesbergh.” Until then, the first source documenting a Liechtenstein provenance for the Ribera painting of Aristotle dated from 1767; see Vincenzio Fanti, Descrizzione Completa di tutto ciò che ritrovasi nella galleria di pittura e scultura di sua altezza Giuseppe Wenceslau del S.R.I. principe regnant della casa di Lichtenstein, Vienna, 1767, p. 105, catalogue no. 531. {2} See IMA Clowes Registration Archive, Newhouse Galleries correspondence, letter from Clyde Newhouse to GHAC, dated 22 November 1955, containing some information on this painting. Paintings from the collection of the princes of Liechtenstein were dispersed in 1954, including several of Ribera’s philosophers. Other paintings from this collection went to the National Gallery in Ottawa, Canada, in the same year; see “Canada acquires paintings from one of Europe’s noted collections,” Canadian Art, volume XI, no. 4 (summer 1954): pp. 142-144.

Exhibition Name



Rembrandt to Monet: 500 Years of European Painting from the Clowes Collection and the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields

Chengdu Museum

September 29, 2020 - January 4, 2021

Rembrandt to Monet: 500 Years of European Painting from the Clowes Collection and the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields

Hunan Provincial Museum

May 29, 2020 - September 13, 2020

Rembrandt to Monet: 500 Years of European Painting from the Clowes Collection and the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields

Guandong Museum

January 10, 2020 - May 17, 2020

Between Heaven and Hell: The Drawings of Jusepe de Ribera

Meadows Museum, Southern Methodist University

March 12, 2017 - June 11, 2017

Velazquez - Ribera. Curieux Philosophers

Musée des Beaux-Arts, Rouen

November 16, 2005 - February 20, 2006

Jusepe de Ribera: 1591-1652

Metropolitan Museum of Art

September 16, 1992 - November 22, 1992

The Tangible World of the Spirit: The Paintings of Jusepe de Ribera

Kimball Art Museum

December 4, 1982 - February 6, 1983

Legacy of Spain

San Diego Museum of Art

January 2, 1969 - March 4, 1969

El Greco to Goya

Rhode Island School of Design

April 19, 1963 - May 26, 1963

El Greco to Goya

John Herron Art Institute and Museum

February 8, 1963 - March 24, 1963

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