God the Father oil on canvas, tondo 695/8 in. (177 cm.) diam, NOTES Passarotti was amongst the most important painters working in late sixteenth century Bologna and he, along with Dionys Calvaert, Prospero Fontana and others, comprised a second generation of artists who had known Michelangelo directly and were highly influenced by the Tuscan/Roman artists such as Giorgio Vasari and Taddeo Zuccaro,(in whose house Passarotti stayed during his sejourn in Rome). This hitherto unpublished picture probably dates from the 1570s when Passarotti was the pre-eminent painter in Bologna. It reveals the influence felt at around this time of Pelegrino Tibaldi, whose compositions are characterised by monumental figures in agitated positions. Although not mentioned in the early sources, the present picture must have been intended as the centre piece of the ceiling in a chapel. A possible candidate for this would have been the chapel of the Bonfiglioli Family in the Church of S. Maria del Borgo (now destroyed) above his altarpiece depicting Ecce Homo, also on canvas, now in the Pinacoteca Comunale, Bologna (see C. H”per, Bartolomeo Passarotti (1529-1592), Worms, 1987, pp. 18-21, no. G14, illustrated). The proportions of the figures and the style of the altarpiece, which can be dated circa 1575-77, support this hypothesis. Although no preparatory drawings are known, the pen and ink sketch of God the Father from the collection of John Skippe, (his sale, Christie's, London, 21 November 1958, lot 147b), showing God standing on clouds with his arms lifted above his head, is comparable with this painting ( ibid., p. 158, no. Z204).