|| This superb Old Master later 17th/early 18th century oil painting is attributed to Baroque painter and German born animal artist Philipp Peter Roos. He was active in and near Rome from 1677 onwards and acquired the surname Rosa de Tivoli where he lived for many years. He was famous for painting exactly this sort of scene with a darker background, heavy brown tones and the animals highlighted and often silhouetted. He was known to keep a menagerie of animals so he could paint and draw from live poses. Painted circa 1700 the composition is a seated young shepherd and his dog with two handsome goats and a sheep. The shepherd is clearly the least important element for Roos, his back to us and silhouetted off to the left. In the immediate foreground is his dog which looks remarkably like a springer spaniel. Behind him is a sheep looking round and then two long horned goats, one white one black, on slightly higher ground, silhouetted against a dramatic sky. All the action is happening in the foreground, right in front of the viewer with a gradation in height. One feels one could almost touch the animals. A superb Old Master oil painting with lovely brushwork and detail.
||Philipp Peter Roos (later surnamed Rosa di Tivoli; 1655–1706) was a German Baroque painter, active in and near Rome from 1677 onward. He was born in Frankfurt am Main and learned to paint from his father, the landscape painter Johann Heinrich Roos. He was the brother of the painter Johann Melchior Roos, who briefly worked with him in Italy. As a young man, he painted in the style of his father. He was called to paint for Charles I, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel, who liked him so much he gave him a sum of money to travel to Rome with, which he did in 1677. In Rome, he worked often in the studio of Giacinto Brandi, and by 1681 had fallen in love with his daughter, for whom he converted to Catholicism and later married. In 1683, he joined a papal guild of painters, the Congregation of Virtuiosi al Pantheon. In 1684, he acquired a large house on Vicolo del Riserraglio in the Rione San Paolo in Tivoli, near Rome, whence his surname. In Tivoli, they kept a menagerie of various animals so Roos could draw from live poses. This house was called the "Noah's Ark" by their friends. In his Italian style, he painted life-size figures and animals in a broad manner and a heavy brown tone. In 1691, he moved back to Rome, where he was one of the Bentvueghels painters in the Schildersbent, a grouping of painters from the Low Countries. He had the nickname "Mercurius" because of the rapidity with which he painted; Mercury was the speedy messenger of Zeus.