Journal Article

Forming a collection of paintings in Late Baroque Siena

Linda Bauer and Nello Barbieri

in Journal of the History of Collections

Volume 25, issue 1, pages 45-57
Published in print March 2013 | ISSN: 0954-6650
Published online November 2011 | e-ISSN: 1477-8564 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jhc/fhr027
Forming a collection of paintings in Late Baroque Siena

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By the time of his death in 1727, the Cavaliere Marcello Biringucci possessed some 600 paintings. A group of unpublished documents, mainly forty-two sheets in the Archivio di Stato in Siena offers unusual insight into this Sienese nobleman’s collecting activities. The papers – memoranda, lists, invoices, orders for payment, receipts, accounts of expenses – many in the Cavaliere’s own hand, illustrate the range of sources he drew upon, not only geographical but those in the secondary art market. He employed agents, purchased from the estates of other collectors, acquired art at auctions, and even redeemed the pawn of a debtor. The documents include the names of artists – many well known – with prices or values for some works, and by reference to the largely unpublished inventory of his estate, give some indication of which works in the documents Biringucci acquired and how his taste conformed to the prevailing trends of the period. Online appendices to the paper, at http://www.jhc.oxfordjournals.org, reproduce the 1727 inventory, working papers, and a selection of letters.

Journal Article.  10746 words. 

Subjects: Exhibition Catalogues and Specific Collections ; History of Art ; Social and Cultural History

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