Saturday 31 July 2021

The Illuminations of Stephano Bardini (1836-1922)

I don't think that I had ever heard of Stephano Bardini [Wikipedia] until Laura Zabeo kindly told me that a couple of the illuminations in the collection of Rodolphe Kann had previously belonged to Bardini, and I was able to update their provenances and current whereabouts accordingly in this blogpost.

Laura also kindly sent me images of the relevant pages of Everett Fahy, L'Archivio storico fotografico di Stefano Bardini: Dipinti, disegni, miniature, stampe (Florence, 2000). This includes (pp. 62-64) a list of 30 illuminated cuttings and leaves, and a codex (numbered 692-723), of which photos exist in the Bardini photo archive.

The present location of some is recorded, but the whereabouts of most were not known to Fahy. In two or three posts I will therefore try to identify as many as possible so that his collection will be better known, and so that current owners can add him to the provenance of their own items. I will start with the ones for which Fahy was able to identify the later provenance, and next week turn to some of those that are harder to trace.

Saturday 24 July 2021

Who Owned the "Celotti" Cuttings Sold in 1825?

I mentioned last week that -- until I got side-tracked -- I intended to discuss some ideas put forward by Christopher de Hamel in the Introduction to the Burke Collection catalogue.

I received a copy of the Burke catalogue on 11 February, less than a week after its official 5 February publication-date, and by a curious coincidence of timing this was just four days after I wrote a blogpost about possible collaboration between Ottley and Celotti when selling illuminated cuttings, a subject addressed in the Introduction.

Sunday 18 July 2021

The Backs and Edges of Cuttings

Regular readers will know how often the backs of leaves and cuttings provide vital information. There may be a significant attribution (e.g. "From the Cathedral at Como"); a direct indication of a former owner (e.g. notes initialled "TMW" by Thomas Miller Whitehead); an auction lot number that allows it to be identified in a sale catalogue; text and/or music that allows the ambiguous subject-matter of an initial to be identified; or traces of a characteristic type of adhesive mounting-tape, that reveals it to have been sold by Otto Ege.

This week, I started to write a note about some interesting ideas presented by Christopher de Hamel in the Introduction to the recently published catalogue of the Burke Collection [1], but I quickly became side-tracked by his discussion of a cutting from Santa Maria degli Angeli, shown above.

Sunday 11 July 2021

Wernher von Eistetten: The Puzzle Solved

In a previous post in January last year, I discussed a group of cuttings that seem to come from the Dominican nunnery at Zurich, and I laid out some 19th-century evidence suggesting they were illuminated in 1300 by Wernher von Eistetten, monk of Kaiserheim. But this presented a problem: as I wrote,

"It is not clear why a monk of the Cistercian abbey of Kaiserheim, in Bavaria, might write a manuscript for a nunnery in Zurich, about 260km to the south-west"

Sunday 4 July 2021

The Zion Collection

In the 1990s I catalogued a 13th-century Bible with varied and interesting indications of provenance, including an inscription "Zion MS. 2" on the first flyleaf, as shown above. Here it is in context: