45. Alessandro Maganza

Vicenza 1556 – after 1632 Vicenza

A Saint (Teresa or Catherine) Kissing the Wounds of Christ

In his customary vibrant and fluid style, Alessandro Maganza has used pen and ink to draw these two figures over a preliminary sketch in black chalk. Departing from the usual iconography of the Noli me tangere in which Christ pushes Mary Magdalen away, here he draws a kneeling female saint towards him. The nun’s habit is not precise enough to identify either St Catherine of Siena or St Theresa of Avila. By accentuating the movement of Christ’s right hip, Maganza has created enough space to place the female figure in the gap, leaving visible his wounds, proof of his resurrection. Along the right-hand edge of the sheet, which has obviously been trimmed, we can see a second study of the saint – or of the group. Larger, and washed in brown ink, it was probably executed by the artist to clarify his first sketch.