Botticelli and the Coronation of the Virgin at the Bass Museum
#MIAMI The Jacquemart-André Museum is preparing to organize a major exhibition dedicated to Sandro Botticelli in 2020 (exhibition to which we will return later) which, we already imagine, will be at least as successful as the Caravaggio last autumn.With this in mind, The Bass Museum of Art in Miami is currently offering a preview of a completely exceptional piece by Botticelli, from the museum’s permanent collection, which will be loaned to the Institut de France for the occasion: Le Couronnement de la Vierge, produced in collaboration with Domenico Ghirlandaio.
Although it has collaborated on several occasions during their careers, notably in the Sistine Chapel, this altarpiece, originally commissioned for the Badia Camaldolese of San Giusto and San Clemente in Volterra, remains one of the only pieces known to date from their joint participation in the design and execution of a unique composition. Especially since the life of this masterpiece is quite hectic. “Forgotten” until the end of the 19th century in a small church near Arezzo, it was sold at auction in 1883, after an earthquake seriously damaged the religious building. From then on, the piece will pass from hand to hand, Latvia, Belarus, Switzerland to finish its journey in the collection of John and Johanna Bass. It was one of the first pieces in the catalogue of their collection that they offered to the city museum in 1963.
The coronation of the Virgin remains a very popular representation in Renaissance art. Here, the two striking subjects in the upper part of the painting, Mary and Christ, are attributed to Botticelli, while the monks and saints, witnesses of this coronation from the earth, in the lower part are attributed to Domenico Ghirlandaio. The whole is very realistic, and the face of the Camaldolese monk, very precise, suggests that it could be that of the generous patron.
The Coronation of the Virgin Mary
Unique piece to discover until 24 October 2019
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