Lorenzo de' Medici was a key figure in the creation of the Renaissance. An important patron of the arts in fifteenth century Florence, he was also a passionate collector of objects from antiquity and the post-antique period. His activities as a collector are documented in a group of 173 letters, previously unknown and published here for the first time, which provide the most complete picture of a well-known and historically important collector. As revealed in these letters, Lorenzo acquired sculpture to embellish his palace, but his real predilection was for small objects: coins, hardstone vases, and gems. His main source was the Roman dealer Giovanni Ciampolini, whose scandalous behavior demonstrates the gamesmanship of the art market. This book reveals how objects were studied, where they were displayed, the criteria for their selection, and their monetary worth.Read more
- Contains 173 previously unknown and unpublished letters of Lorenzo de' Medici, prime mover in the creation of the Renaissance
- Explores his collection of objects, previously unexplored by scholars
- Establishes a documented link between antiquity and its influence on Renaissance art
Reviews & endorsements
'As a testament to the rewards of meticulous archival scholarship and the authors' complete command of their subject, the book is cause for celebration … the authors' patient, empirical methods build to great cumulative effect.' The Burlington MagazineSee more reviews
'A vast and painstakingly researched volume … this out of the ordinary art book is a significant and wise investment … Highly recommended.' Nicola Linza, Il Postino
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- Date Published: May 2006
- format: Hardback
- isbn: 9780521452458
- length: 446 pages
- dimensions: 288 x 225 x 33 mm
- weight: 1.761kg
- contains: 135 b/w illus. 9 colour illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. The first period of collecting:
2. The second period of collecting and Lorenzo's sources:
3. Behavior in the art market
4. The objects collected
5. Contemplating the objects
6. The image of Lorenzo as a collector and antiquarian
7. The fate of Lorenzo's collection following the French invasion of Florence in 1494
8. Lorenzo in the context of collecting.
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