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Italian Manuscript Illuminations

Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM



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Lot 134* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

RIMINI, NERI DA (Rimini ca. 1270 - ca. 1322 ?) Historiated initial A cut from a antiphonary (removed from binding) with Christ flanked by the Virgin and John, with three prophets in adoration. Vellum. Rimini, ca. 1305. 193 x 182 mm. Provenance: - Brussels, collection of Vicomte Hyppolyte Vilain (1793-1873). - 1981, London Sotheby's, 14 July 1981, lot 20. - 1992 Milan, collection of Nella Longari. - 2003, Hamburg, Jörn Günther. - Since 2004 in the current collection. Exhibited: - Rimini, Museo della Città, 2. April-28. May 1995, No. 8. Bibliography: - Milvia Bollati, in: Filippo Todini (ed.). Una collezione di Miniature Italiane, Dal Duecento al Cinquecento,Milan 1993, pp. 19-21. - Neri da Rimini, Il Trecento riminese tra pittura e scrittura, Ausstellungkatalog 1995 Rimini, Museo della Città, Milan 1995, p. 84. - Gudrun Dauner, Neri da Rimini und die Rimineser Miniaturmalerei des frühen Trecento, Munich 1998, pp. 87-90. - Pia Palladino, Treasures of a Lost Art. Italian Manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, exh. cat. Cleveland/San Francisco/New York 2003, pp.15-20. - Gaudenz Freuler, Studi recenti sulla miniatura medievale (soprattutto) emiliana. Apunti intorno ad una recente mostra americana (parte1), in Arte Cristiana XCII, 2004, pp. 4-6. - Gaudenz Freuler, Italian Miniatures from the Twelfth to the Sixteenth Centuries, Milan 2013, pp. 214-227. - Friedrich G. Zeileis Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 68-69. This historiated initial A appeared on the frontispiece of a dismantled volume of antiphonaries, of which I have recently recorded a futher 17 single leaves or initials (Freuler 2013, fig.1) This superb initial and its sister pieces can be added to the miniature dated to 1300 at the Fondazione Cini, so may have been produced within the first five years.

Rimini, ca. 1305
Bildinitiale A aus einem aufgelösten Antiphonar geschnitten mit Christus, flankiert von der Jungfrau und Johannes von drei Propheten angebetet. Pergament 193 x 182 mm.

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Lot 115* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

BALDOLO, VANNI DI (active 1332-1348) Sheet from a gradual with the historiated initial S and a depiction of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Vellum. Perugia, ca. 1335-1340. 532 x 382 mm. Provenance: - Perugia, the Cathedral of San Lorenzo (?). - 1924, Paris, Kalebdjian. - 1924-2004, New York, Robert Lehman collection. - 2004, Hamburg, Jörn Günther collection. - 2005, Zurich private collection. - Zurich, Koller 18 March 2008, Lot No. A144/3403 and purchased by the current owner. Exhibited: - Cleveland, Cleveland Museum of Art (23.2.-4.5.2003). - San Francisco, Fine Arts Museum (7.6.-31.8.2003). - New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art (30.9.2003 - 1.2. 2004) "Treasures of a Lost Art" Italian Manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance. Bibliography: - Seymour De Ricci (assisted by William J.Wilson). - Census of Medieval and Renaissance Manuscripts in the United States and Canada, New York 1927, p. 1707 No A.16. - Pia Palladino, Treasures of a lost Art. Italian manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, New Haven/London 2003, pp. 33-34. - Friedrich G. Zeileis, Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 286-288. This leaf with the historiated initial S, was cut from a gradual as fol. XIX. Our thanks to Pia Pallladiino (2003) for the correct attribution of this finely painted leaf from a gradual, to the Perugian painter and miniaturist Vanni di Baldolo. Vanni di Baldolo, with his monumental, expressive figures and the lively but harmonious narrative style, is quite rightly considered one of the leading forces in the art of the illuminated manuscript in Perugia around 1340.


CHF 24 000 / 32 000 | (€ 22 430 / 29 910)

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Lot 130* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

ANONYMOUS TUSCAN BOOK ILLUMINATOR, 15TH CENTURY. Two historiated initials from an antiphonary, a historiated initial T with Saints Philipp and James and historiated initial Q with the Princes of the Apostles, Peter and Paul. Vellum. Lucca, ca. 1410-1420. 185 x 180 mm, resp. 212 x 190 mm. Provenance: - Presumably originally from a Dominican convent in Lucca, thence to Certosa Santo Spirito. - Since ca. 1838, Edinburgh, Collection of Lord James Dennistoun of Dennistoun (1805-55). - Thence in a family collection (Mr Henley-Henson) and subsequently in the collection of the Bishop of Durham Castle Bishop Auckland (Durham). Since 1933, Saltwood Castle (Kent), collection of Lord Kenneth Clark (1903-1983), Lord of Saltwood Castle. - London Sotheby's 1984, 3 July, Lot numbers 94/2 and 94/32. - 1994, London, Sam Fogg. - Thence in the current collection. Bibliography: - William M.Voelkle, Roger S. Wieck, The Bernard Breslauer Collection of Art. Manuscript Illuminations, New York 1992, pp. 181-185. - Mittelalterliche Handschriften und Miniaturen, Katalog Jörn Günther Hamburg, Hamburg 1995, p. 220. - Milvia Bollati in: Sumptuosa tabula picta. Pittori a Lucca tra gotico e rinascimento, Lucca 1998, pp. 64-75, 217-218. - Gaudenz Freuler in: Ada Labriola, Cristina De Benedictis, Gaudenz Freuler, La miniatura senese.1270-1420, Milan 2002, pS. 196. Friedrich G. Zeileis, Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 238-243. The initials of both leaf fragments of the letters T and Q form part of a larger series of fragments, which supposedly were purchased by James Dennistoun in 1838 from Certosa in Lucca. Having been bought by Kenneth Clark in 1933, they finally reappeared on the market in 1984 via Sotheby’s. The work of this group of illuminators, so strongly reminiscent of that of Nicolò di Giacomo and Martino di Bartolomeo active in Lucca in the final years of the 14th century, leads us to assume that the antiphonaries, from which this series of fragments came, were probably started around 1400.


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Lot 135* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

RIMINI, NERI DA (Rimini ca. 1270 - ca. 1322 ?) Leaf from an antiphonary with a historiated initial L: Moses receiving the Tablet from God the Father. Vellum. Rimini, 1314. 573 x 385 mm (Initial 100 x 95 mm). Provenance: - Rimini, San Francesco. - 1905 Frankfurt, Joseph Baer. - London Sotheby's, 23 June 1998, Lot No. 14. - Lugano Albi Rosenthal. - Around 2000 purchased by the current owner from the collection of Albi Rosenthal in Lugano. Bibliography: - Auction catalogue Joseph Baer & Co, Frankfurt 1905, p. 7. - Gudrun Dauner, Neri da Rimini und die Rimineser Miniaturmalerei des frühen Trecento, Munich 1998, pp. 97-144, esp. 135; London Sotheby's 23 June 1998, lot 14. - Friedrich G. Zeileis Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 76-79; Simonetta Nicolini, in: Milvia Bollati (ed.), Dizionario Biografico die miniatori Italiani. Secoli IX-XVI, Milan 2004, pp. 816-819. Further relevant literature: - Neri da Rimini, Il Trecento riminese tra pittura e scrittura, Ausstellungkatalog 1995 Rimini, Museo della Città, Milan 1995, pp.142 ff. This leaf, long thought to be lost, which only reappeared on the London art market in 1998, shows God the Father within an initial L, as he hands Moses a tablet (not the tablet of the Ten Commandments), and so opens the response of the first nocturn of the fourth Sunday of fasting. This leaf is without doubt an important testament to the work of the illuminator Neri da Riminis at the height of his powers around 1314.


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Lot 125* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

CAMALDOLESE, DON SIMONE (active 1379 – 1405) Historiated initial H from an antiphonary with the Adoration of the Shepherds. Vellum. Florence, ca. 1395-1400. 245 x 200 mm. Provenance: - 1980 Kreuzlingen, Kisters collection. - 1996, Hamburg, Jörn Günther. - 1997 the current collection. Exhibited: - Lugano, Fondazione Thyssen-Bornemisza, Villa Favorita, 7. April - 30. June 1991, No. 79. Bibliography: - Miklòs Boskovits, Pittura Fiorentina alla Vigilia del Rinascimento, Florence 1975, p. 429. - D.G. Firmani, Don Simone Camaldolese and manuscript Production in late Trecento Florence a codiological examination, Diss. Maryland 1984, p. 10. - Gaudenz Freuler, Manifestatori delle cose mircolose. Arte Italiana del 300 e del 400 da collezioni in Svizzera e Liechtenstein (Exh. Cat Lugano, Fondazione Thyssen) Einsiedeln 1991, p. 208. - Friedrich G. Zeileis Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 244-247. Further cited literature: - Gaudenz Freuler in: Lorenzo Monaco dalla Tradizione Giottesca al Rinascimento, Florence 2006, p. 138. - Gaudenz Freuler, in: L'eredità di Giotto. Arte a Firenze 1340-1375, Cat. Florence Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence 2008, pp. 236-239. This imposing Florentine initial, conceived in the style of a monumental wall painting, narrates the Adoration of the newborn Jesus the Redeemer by his parents and the shepherds who have approached the scene The authorship of this fragment cut from a antiphonary, as that of the Sienese Camaldolese brother Don Simone Camaldolese, remains undisputed since it was first published by Boskovit (1975). Various fragments scattered amongst the most famous museums relate to further dispersed cimelia by this illuminator, whose fame reached beyond Florence to the court of Visconti and Gonzaga


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Lot 128* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

BARTOLO, ANDREA DI (Siena circa 1360 - 1428 ibid.) Fragment of a leaf of an antiphonary with a fragmentary historiated initial L and a depiction of Saint Lawrence in the prison of Hippolytus, dispensing alms to the needy. Vellum. Siena, ca. 1400-05. 171 x 163 mm Provenance: - Siena, San Martino (?). - Since ca. 1830-40, Edinburgh, collection of Lord James Dennistoun of Dennistoun (1805-55). - Thence to a family collection and consequently to the collection of the Bishop of Durham Castle Bishop Auckland (Durham). - Since 1933, Saltwood castle (Kent), collection of Lord Kenneth Clark (1903-1983), Lord of Saltwood Castle. - London Sotheby's 1984, 3 July, lot 91. - 1985, New York, H.P. Kraus. - London art dealer - Since ca.1990 in the current collection. Bibliography: - Gaudenz Freuler, Manifestatori dell cose mircolose. Arte Italiana del 300 e del 400 da collezioni in Svizzera e Liechtenstein (Ausstellungskatalog Lugano, Fondazione Thyssen) Einsiedeln 1991, p. 84. - Gaudenz Freuler in: Ada Labriola, Cristina De Benedictis, Gaudenz Freuler, La miniatura senese.1270-1420, Milan 2002, p. 188-197. - Gaudenz Freuler, Studi recenti sulla miniatura medievale: Emilia, Veneto, Toscana. Appunti su una mostra americana (parte II), in: Arte Cristiana XCII, 2004, pp. 157- 170. - Gaudenz Freuler, Ancora sulla miniatura senese dei secoli XIII-XV. Postille ad un libro (parte I), in: Arte Cristiana, XCVII 2009, pp. 279-289, 232-233. - Gaudenz Freuler, in: L' Arte di Francesco. Capolavori d'Arte Italiana e Terre d'Asia dal XII al XV secolo (Exh. Cat), Florence, Galleria dell'Accademia, 31.3-11.Oct.2015), Florence 2015, pp. 226-233. This leaf fragment from the famous former Dennistoun collection was identified not long ago as the work of the Sienese painter Andrea di Bartolo, who may be regarded as a leading illuminator of the last decade of the 14th century This most finely painted miniature may well be contemporaneous with the choir books made for Henry IV, or from very shortly before then, and reveals the illustrator to be a leading illuminator in Siena at the turn of the 15th century.


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Lot 117* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

1ST MASTER OF THE CHOIR BOOKS OF SIENA CATHEDRAL Historiated initial E from a choir book with Christ blessing the Apostles. Vellum. Siena, ca. 1270-75. 145 x 125 mm. Provenance: - 1966, New York, Mortimer Brandt collection. - In the current collection since ca. 1995-96. Bibliography: - Harry Bober, The Mortimer Brandt Collection of Medieval Manuscript Illuminations, Memphis Tenessee 1965, pp. 28-29. - An Exhibition of Italian Panels and Manuscripts from the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries in Honor of Richard Offner, The Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford 1965, p. 48. - Ada Labriola, in: Miklòs Boskovits (ed.) Miniature a Brera 1100-1422, Milan 1997, pp. 90-91. - Ada Labriola, in A. Labriola, C. De Benedictis, G. Freuler, La miniatura senese 1270-1420, Siena 2002, pp. 30 ff. and 262-265. - Friedrich G. Zeileis, Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp.156-157. This historiated initial E with its depiction of Christ blessing the Apostles could well have had as its subject Christ sending out the Apostles. When it was first pubished in the catalogue of the Mortimer Brandt Collection, this historiated initial was erroneously linked the circle of Giovanni di Gaibana. As Ada Labriola has rightly established, this miniature is the work of a Sienese illuminator circa 1270, known as the First Master of the Choir Books of Siena Cathedral.


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Lot 119* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

MAESTRO DELLO STATUTO DEL 1337 Initial V with Christ in Majesty from an antiphonary. Tempera on vellum. Siena ca. 1315-1320. 205 x 168 mm Provenance: - London, Robert Dowma. - 1997, Hamburg, Jörn Günther. - In the current collection since ca. 1998. Bibliography: - Recent Acquisitions. Medieval & Renaissance illuminated manuscripts, Cat. Jörn Günther, Bruce Ferrini, Hamburg, Akron (OH) 1997. - Ada Labriola in: Ada Labriola, Cristina De Benedictis, Gaudenz Freuler, La miniatura senese.1270-1420, Milan 2002, pp. 55 ff., pp. 291-295. - Ada Labriola, Gaudenz Freuler, Maestro dello statuto del 1337, in: Milvia Bollati (ed.) Dizionario Biografico dei miniatori Italiani. Secoli IX - XVI, Milan 2004, pp. 610-612. - Gaudenz Freuler, Ancora sulla miniatura senese dei secoli XIII-XV. Postille ad un libro (parte I), in :Arte Cristiana, XCVII 2009, pp. 283-284. - Gaudenz Freuler, Italian Miniatures from the Twelfth to the Sixteenth Centuries, Milan 2013, pp. 478-485. - Friedrich G. Zeileis, Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp. 184. Further reading: - Gaudenz Freuler, Manifestatori dell cose miracolose. Arte Italiana del 300 e del 400 da collezioni in Svizzera e Liechtenstein, cat. exh. Lugano 1991, Einsiedeln 1991, p. 60. - Ada Labriola, Un corale trecentescho nell' Archivio Capitolare di Pistoia, in: Paragone, 529-533, 1994, pp. 10-16. This initial V with an unusual depiction of the Ascension of Christ, may have opened the antiphonary for the laude for the Feast of the Ascension. As Ada Labriola has rightly recognised, these initials cannot with any certainty be attributed to the Master of the Massa Marittima Choir Books, but rather to a presumably somewhat younger Sienese contemporary, Master of the Statutes of 1337.


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Lot 127* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

MASTER OF THE BEFFI ALTAR Historiated initial B from an antiphonary with the Virgin Mary at prayer. Vellum. Abruzzo, ca.1410-1420. 183 x 177 mm. Provenance: - from a Benedictine monastery on the lands of the Aquaviva family (Teramo, Atri). - Since ca. 1830-40, Edinburgh, collection of Lord James Dennistoun of Dennistoun (1805-55). - Thence to a family collection. - Subsequently in the collection of the Bishop of Durham, Durham Castle Bishop Auckland (Durham). - Since 1933, Saltwood Castle (Kent), Collection of Lord Kenneth Clark (1903-1983), Lord of Saltwood Castle. - London Sotheby's 1984, 3 July, lot 86/2. - 1985, New York, H.P. Kraus. - 1989, London, Sam Fogg. - In the current collection since ca. 1990. Bibliography: - Medieval & Renaissance Miniature Painting, Cat Sam Fogg, Bruce Ferrini, London 1989, No. 12. - Francesca Manzati, in: Illuminare l'Abruzzo. Codici Miniati tra medioevo e Rinascimento, Pescara, 2012, pp. 233-239. - Friedrich G. Zeileis Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp.216-217. Further relevant literature: - Pia Palladino, Treasures of a Lost Art. Italian Manuscript Painting of the Middle Ages and Renaissance, exh. cat. Cleveland/San Francisco/New York 2003, pp.60-61. - Francesca Manzati, Il Messale Orsini per la chiesa di San Francesco a Guardiagrele, pescara 2007. This simple but generous initial B, set against a ground of gold and blue, may have opened the antiphonary of the first nocturn for Candlemass (Purificatio Virginis, 2 Feb) The Beffi master was one of the leading artistic figures in Abruzzo and was also sought after as a painter of frescoes. The distinctly iconographic arrangement around the Virgin, leads us to assume that the dispersed antiphonary came from a Benedictine monastery within the district of Acquaviva dedicated to the Virgin.


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Lot 144* - A174 Italian Manuscript Illuminations - Friday 18 September 2015, 01.30 PM

GIACOMO DI NASCIMBENE, NICOLO DI (NICOLO DA BOLOGNA) (Bologna ca. 1330 – ca. 1404 probably ibid.) Fragment of a leaf of an antiphonary with the initial B and the Baptism of Christ. Vellum. Bologna, ca. 1360-1365. 215 x 163 mm (Initial 80 x 62 mm). Provenance: - Florence, private collection. - Before 1985 Florence, New York, Martello collection. - London Christie's, 24 November 1993, Lot No. 5. - 1994 London Sam Fogg to the current collection. Bibliography: - Miklòs Boskovits, The Martello collection. Paintings ,drawings and miniatures from the XIVth to the XVIIIth centuries, Florence 1985, p.120. - Gaudenz Freuler, Italian Miniatures from the Twelfth to the Sixteenth Centuries, Milan 2013, pp. 284-293. - Friedrich G. Zeileis Più ridon le carte (3.ed.), Rauris 2014, pp.120-121. This leaf fragment comes from a dismantled antiphonary. This small and extremely finely painted historiated initial showing the Baptism of Christ, introduces the first antiphonary to the Laudes of the Feast of Saint John the Baptist (24 June). A complete leaf with the figure of Laurentius in an initial L held in a Milanese private collection, was recently proved to have come from the same choir book. In this in fact simple miniature, the illuminator Nicolò di Giacomo exercises his artistic powers to the full and makes plain the reasons why he quickly rose to be the leading illuminator of Bologna in the second half of the 14th century.


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