to Christie's, it was "likely made for someone connected to the
imperial court in the Netherlanbds circa 1505. In the 19th
Century, this Book of Hours was acquired by the Rothschild family and
in 1999 Barons Nathantial and Albert von Rothschild sold it at
Christie's in London for $13,378,558, a world auction record for an
At this auction it has an estimate of
$12,000,000 to $18,000,000. It
sold to a private collection for $13,605,000. Given its
magnificent condition and size, one would have thought it would have
fetched $30 million or more.
of the 72 offered lots, 65 percent, sold for $44,944,250.
H. J. Hall, co-chairman of the Old Masters department at Christies,
stands in front of Lot 166, "Portrait of Cosimo I de' Medici,
half-length, in a black slashed doublet, oil on panel, 39 1/2 by 30 1/4
166 is a great portrait of Cosimo I de' Medici, half-length, in a
black, slashed doublet by Jacopo Carucci known as Jacopo Pontormo.
An oil on panel, it measures 39 1.2 by 30 1/4 inches.
property from the estate of Barbara Piasecka Johnson and is being sold
to benefit her foundation. It has an extremely conservative
estimate of $300,000 to $500,000. It
sold for $725,000, far short
of what a very similar but more colorful painting by Pontormo sold for
in 1989. Nicholas H. J. Hall, co-chair of the Old Masters
department at Christie's, told The
City Review at the press preview that the low estimate
reflected is less than pristine condition.
121, "The Madonna and Child Enthroned with Two Angels," by the Circle
of the Master of the Crucifix No.434," 13th Century, tempera and gold
on panel, 40 7/8 by 27 3/4 inches
A June 1, 1989
article in The New York
by Rita Reif noted that a much more colorful Pontormo portrait of the
same sitter had been auctioned the day before at Christie's"for $35.2
million to the J. Paul Getty Museum of Malibu, Calif.," adding that
"The price more than tripled the previous record at auction for an Old
Pontormo's painting, identified by Christie's and some art
historians as a portrait of Cosimo de'Medici, was exhibited at the
Frick Collection for almost two decades until it was removed in
preparation for this sale.
"The painting, on view since 1970 at the Frick
Collection, was removed in March by executors for the estate of
Chauncey Devereaux Stillman, a New York philanthropist who died in
January," the article continued.
''We were very pleased with the price and the fact
that the Pontormo will be on view in a public institution,'' said
George Goldner, curator of paintings and drawings at the Getty, after
the hammer came down on the sale. ''It is sad for the Frick but it is
important that his painting is not going to an investor or to a Swiss
vault, and it is not going to be back on the market in a year or two.''
The price for the painting eclipsed the $10.5
million paid in 1985 for Andrea Mantegna's ''Adoration of the Magi,''
at Christie's in London.
The painting, called the ''Halberdier,'' was lent
to the Frick by Mr. Stillman in 1970 for the museum's 50th anniversary
121 is a startlingly bright and colorful and large tempera and gold on
panel by the Circle of the Master of the Crucifix No. 434 who was
active in Tuscany circa 1230-1250. Depicting "The Madonna and
Child Enthroned with Two Angels," it measures 40 7/8 by 27 3/4 inchjes.
It overflows with stylistic idiosyncracies such as the
huge left hand, her three-dimensional, notched halo, her
abstract black robe, and very syncopated gold fringe. This
a very bold side to Medieval painting. The catalogue entry
it is "remarkable"and "an exceedingly rare survivor from the third
quarter of the 13th Century and an previously unpublished work whose
author takes his name from a monumental work at the Louvre. It has an
estimate of $300,000 to $500,000.
It failed to sell.
127, "The Virgin of Humility," by Battista di Biagio Sanguigni, tempera
and gold on panel with a shaped top, 30 1/2 by 17 1/2 inches
127 is a very beautiful tempera and gold with a shaped top of "The
Virigin of Humility" by Battista di Biagio Sanguigni (Florence,
1393-1451), who is sometimes also known as The Master of 1419.
measures 30 1/2 by 17 1/2 inches. It is property from he collection of
Richard L. Feigen, the New York art dealer (see The City Review article).
IIn 1923, Bernard Berenson assigned the work to Domenico di
Michelino (1417-1491). The exquisite painting was included in
2005-6 exhibitiion on Fra Angelico at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
It has an estimate of $800,000 to $1,000,000. It sold for $785,000.
108, "The Crucifixion with the Vrigin Mary and Staint Johhn the
Evangelist," by Giovanni da Bologna, tempera and gold on panel, 60 1/8
by 30 3/8 inches
108 is an important work attributed to Giovanni da Bologna (documented
in Venice and Treviso 1377-1389). The catalogue entry notes
he was "one of the most faithful ppupils of Leorenzo Beneziano
(flourished 1356-1372). The work depicts "The Crucifixion
Virgin Mary and Saint John the Evangelist." A tempera and
panel, it measures 60 1/8 by 30 3/8 inches. It has an
$500,000 to $700,000. It
sold for $485,000.
136,"The Madonna and Child in a Niche," by Studio of Alessandro
Filipepi, called Sandro Botticelli, tempera, oil and gold on panel, 32
by 21 3/4 inches
136 is a very fine and beautiful tempera, oil and gold on panel
depicting "The Madonna and Child in a Niche" by the Studio of
Alessandro Filipepi, called Sandro Botticelli (1444/5-1510).
It measures 32 by 21 3/4 inches. The catalogue
that here are numerous suriviving versions and that Luciano Bellosi has
argued that a version deaccessioned in 1990 by the Museum of Fine Arts
in Boston was the original autograph work on Botticelli. The catalogue
entry, however, suggesta that "the master's studio was more
complicated" and that "it is likely, in fact, that a a number of the
known surviving versions of the present composition include some degree
of intervention by the master himself, adding that this version "is
unqiue among all extant versions of the composition its inclusion of a
delicate gray niche in the background, embellished with carved cherubs.
Such a major addition would seem to suggest that it was too
important to have been simply added by a workshop member. The
has an estimate of $500,000 to $700,000. It sold for $701,000.
102, "The Madonna and Child with a Goldfinch," Studio of Alessandro
Filipepi, called Sandro Botticelli, oil,tempera andgold on panel, 290
1/4 by 16 inches
work in the auction given to Studio of Alessandro Filipepi, called
Sandro Botticelli is Lot 102, "The Madonna and Child with a Goldfinch,"
but the two facesshow none of Botticelli's beauty. This work,
oil, tempera and gold on panel that measures 29 1/4by 16
property from The Metropolitan Museum of Art. It was once
Conte Alessandro Contini-Bonacossi of Rome and New York and then Felix
M.Warburg whos family gave it to the museum in1941.. The lot
an estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold for $749,000.
141, "The Madonna and Child with the Infant Saint John the Baptist,"
oil and gold on panel, by Circle of Leonardo da Vinci, 28 1/4 by 19 78
141 is a very beautiful and very fine depiction of "The
Madonna and Child with the Infant Saint John The Baptist,"
by the Circle of Leonardo da Vinci" (1452-1519), an oil and
gold on panel, 28 1/4 by 19 7/8 inches. The catalogue entry
states that this belongs to a small group of works that preserve a lost
composition by Leonardo and it compares elements of the painting to
several in other works by Leonardo. The entry offers no
reasons why it should not be considered authentic unless one might
argue that it is too good to be true. It has an
estimate of $300,000 to $400,000. It sold for $497,000.
155, "The Virgin and Child," by The Master of the Stern Virgin and
Child," oil on panel, 13 by 9 3/8 inches
155 is a nice version of "The Virgin and Child" by The Master of the
Stern Virgin and Child." An oil on panel, it measures 13 by 9
3/8 inches and is from the estate of Max Stern it was
reconsistuted to the extate of Max Stern in 2013 and was with the
Galerie Stern n Dusseldorf in1936 as by "The Master of Flemaille.
"It has an estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold for $557,000.
128, "The Adoration of the Magi," by Giovanni Battista Castello, called
Il Genovese," pen and black ink, bodycolor, heightened with gold on
vellum, 10 5/8 by 8 1/4 inches
of the auction's gems is Lot 129, "The Adoration of the Magi,"by
Giovanni Battista Castello, called Il Genovese (1547-1637-9), an
exquisite pen and black ink, bodycolor, heightened with gold on vellum.
It measures 10 5/8 by 8 1/4 inches. It is property
from the estate of Barbara Piasecka Johnson. It was once in
the collection of Pope Georgy XVI (1765-1846). It has a very
modest estimate of $40,000 to $60,000. It sold for $100,000.
of the Old Master's Department at Christie's discussing Lot 165, "Law
and Grace," by Lucas Cranach I and Lucas Cranach II, oil, gold and
paper on panel, 25 1/2 by 47 1/2 inches
165 is a spectacular oil, gold and paper on panel by Lucas Cranach I
(1472-1553) and Lucas Cranach II (1515-1586) entitled "Law
and Grace." It measures 25 1/2 by 47 1/2 and according to the
catalogue "is rooted in the theological principles of Martin Luther."
Detail of Lot
165 with signature and date above skull
of Christie's Old Master Department discussing Lot 164, "Landscape with
a tree and a fortress on a rocky cliff - a fragment," by Lucas Cracach
I, oil on panel, 17 by 10 7/8 inches
"With its vivid,
jewel-toned palette, deep, panoramic landscapes, and expressive
figures, Law and Grace
exhibits all of the stylistic hallmarks that placed Lucas
the forefront of artistic innovation in 16th Century Europe.
It has an
estimate of $1,500,000 to $2,000,000. It sold for $2,235,000.
164 is a very fine fragment of a landscape oil on panel by
Lucas Cranach I (1472-1553). It measures 17 by 10 7/8 inches.
It has an esitmate of $1,000,000 to $1,500,000. It failed to sell.
Glazer of Christie's Old Masters Department, adjusting hanging of Lot
158. "The Lamentation," by Gerard David, oil on panel in original
frame, 9 3/8 by 7 1/8 inches (painting)
159 is a very good, small depiction of "The Lamentation" by Gerard
David ( circa 1460-1523). An oil on panel, it mesures 9 3/8
by 7 1/8 inches.
Detail of Lot
has an estimate of $1,500,000 to $2,500,000. It failed to sell.
159, "The Virgin and Child Enthroned with Musical Angels, a Landscape
Beyond," by Adriaen Isenbrandt,oil on panel, 11 3/4 by 8 3/4 inches
very excellent small work is Lot 159, "The Virgin and Child Enthroned
with Musical Angels, a Landscape Beyond," by Adriaen Isenbrandt
(early 16th Century to 1551). An oil on panel, it
measures only 11 3/4 by 8 3/4 inches. The cataglogue entry
corrrectly describes this panel was "splendid" and"refined," adding
that "Luxurious details such as the cabouchon-cut gems on the Virgin's
neckline and illuminated book held by one of the singing
angels complement the golden architecture, remarkable for its
flamboyant tracery and delicate filigree. The lot
has a modest estimate of $300,000 to $500,000. It failed to sell.
"The Holy Family with Saint Catherine" by Lorenzo Lotto, oil
on canvas, 33 3/4 by 43 5/8 inches
111 is a good oil on canvas by Lorenzo Lotto (circa 1480-1556),
entitled "The Holy Family wiht Saint Catherine of Alexandria," 33 3/4
by 43 5/8 inches. This work was rediscovered in 1988 and is one of
seven known versions and is considered to "be rivalled in quality by
the Academia Cararra canvas alone and was "disfigured by heavy-handed
repaints until its restoration in 2012. It has an estimate of
$2,000,000 to $3,000,000. It
failed to sell.
116, "The Adoration of the Shepherds," by Jacopo da Ponte, called
Jacopo Bassano, oil on canvas, 28 3/8 by 44 1/8 inches
116 is a good depiction of "The Adoration of the Shepherds" by Jacopo
Bassano (circa 1510-1592). An oil on canvas, it measures 28
3/8 by 44 1/98 inches. Bassano was held in high regard in
Venice as evidenced by the fact that Veronese included a portrait of
him along with himself, Titian and Tintoretto in his masterpiece The
Feast of the Marriage at Cana which is at the Louvre. This
lot has an estimate of $8,000,000 to $12,000,000. It sold for $8,900,000, a world
auction record for the artist.
"Portrait of Barbara Schwarz, half-length," by Christoph Amberger, oil
on panel, 28 3/8 by 24 1/8 inches
164 is a good oil on paner portrait of Barbara
Schwarz by Christoph Amberger (circa 1505-1562). It measures
28 3/8 by 24 1/8 inches. The pendant portrait of her husband,
Matthaus Schwarz, is in the collection of Museeo Thyssen-Bornemisza.
Amberger was the leadinh portraitist of the patrician classes
in 16th Century Augsberg and was one of the major masters of the
International courtly portrait style prevailing at the time.
Like his near contemporary Hans Holbein, [he] belongs to the
generation of artists, following that of Albrect Durer. This
lot has an ambitious estimate of $4,000,000 to $6,000,000. It failed to sell.
"Laocoon," by Alessandro Allori, oil on panel, 28 5/8 by 22 1/4 inches
168 is an excellent and wonderful oil on panel by Alessandro Allori
(1535-1607), the pupil and adoptive son of Agnolo Bronzino, depicting
"Laocoon." It measures 28 5/8 by 22 1/4 inches. It
is being sold to benefit the Cornell University College of Veterininary
Lot 171, "The
Raising of Lazarus," by Mirabello Cavalori, oil on panel, 44 1/4 by 45
In 1506, the"Laocoon" statue was dug up in a vineyard on the Esquiline
hill in Rome and the most famous account of the tragic death of the
high priest Laocoon and his sons was Virgil's Aeneid.
The catalogue entry provides the folowing commentary."
The ancient Roman poet descripbes how during the Trojan war
the mainland Greeks, having feigned retreat, hid inside a great wooden
horse....they had left on the battlefield. Suspecting
treachery, Laocoon warned his fellow Trojans...but was ignored.
Shortly thereafter, while Laocoon was preparing to sacrifice
a bull according to his priestly duties, the gods sent two
enormous serpents from the sea to attack him and his sons.
The Trojans interpreted Loacooon's horrific death as a sign
of the disapproval of their refusal of the Greeks' gift and so they
brought the wood horse into their city, leading it to be sacked.
The rediscovery of the Laocoon in 1506 had a profound impact
on Italian Renassiance art."
The sculpture is now at the Vatican.
The lot has a modest estimate of $400,000 to $600,000. It failed to sell.
171 is a fine Mannerist oil on panel by Mirabello Cavalori (1535-1572)
of "The Raisiing of Lazarus." It measures 44 1/4 by 45 1/2
inches. The catalogue entry notes that "Cavalori's masterful
rendering of details such as the tangled rope in the foreground...points
to the future of Florentine painting, where observable reality, than
the artist's imagination would serve was the primary source
of inspiration. Cavalori was a student of Ridolfo
del Ghirlandaio. The lot has an estimate of $400,000 to
failed to sell.