(b. ca. 1497, Caravaggio, d. 1543, Messina)

Two male heads

Red chalk on brown paper, 142 x 113 mm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The bearded man, facing forward, is considered by most critics to be a self-portrait executed by Polidoro da Caravaggio. The bearded face in this study is an archetypal character who recurs often in the artist's pictorial works, and it is not implausible that the artist chose a self-portrait to create a figure with a universal quality that could be used in different compositions.