Storia dell’Arte 112, Settembre – Dicembre 2005
Claude Lorrain’s Pendant Landscapes of 1646-50 for Camillo Pamphilj, Nephew of Pope Innocent X. Classicism, Architecture, and Gardens as Contexts for the Artist’s Roman Patronage
Early in the pontificate of Pope Innocent X (r. 1644-1655), two very large landscapes were painted by Claude Lorrain for Camillo Pamphilj (1622-1666), the twenty-two year-old Cardinal- Nephew of the pope. The oil paintings were intended to be pendants, and in the modern art historical literature they are titled View of Delphi with a Procession and The Mill (Landscape with Dancing Figures). In mid- September 1646, Claude received two recorded payments for his work on this pair of landscapes, totalling a hundred scudi out of the personal accounts of the young Cardinal-Nephew, and he may have received additional recompensation, for which the records are lost. In those payments, the commission on which Claude was working was described as «dui Quadri di Paesi, che stà facendo p[er] serv.[iti]o n.[ostr]ro di palmi 7, e 5,» and the painter was named as «Monsu Claudio Lorenese Pittore.» The two landscapes were delivered to the patron either together as a pair, or one after the other, probably between 1648 and 1650. Just two years later, in about 1652, they figured in an inventory of Camillo Pamphilj’s art collection, so we know that he received them from the painter.