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19 Jan 9AM - 28 Jan 9AM (EST) | Online 20187

Old Master Prints

London

19 Jan 9AM - 28 Jan 9AM (EST) | Online 20187

Old Master Prints

Sale Overview

Old Master Prints online offers an intriguing selection of fine and rare prints, spanning  five centuries of the European printmaking, beginning with a German hand-coloured woodcut from mid-15th century and ending with an early 19th century French lithograph by Carle Vernet.

The unrivalled virtuosity of Albrecht Dürer is well represented, both in the medium of woodcut and of engraving, including a fine proof impression of the Crucifixion from the Large Passion and two of his most famous and dazzling engravings: Adam and Eve and Melencolia I.

Rembrandt’s Self-Portrait with a soft Cap and the Self-Portrait with Saskia put us face-to-face with the greatest of all Dutch painter-printmakers, whose sensitivity, astounding draughtsmanship and technical bravura is equally apparent in secular and religious subjects. The night piece The Star of the Kings and a luminous impression of the Hundred Guilder Print on silk are both testament to his mastery of light and shade.

The tastes of the Late Professor Eric Stanley, of a Private Norwegian amateur, and various other scholars and collectors, enable us to offer a great variety of prints from Italy, including rarities by the engravers of Raphael's circle (Marcantonio Raimondi, Marco Dente, Agostino Veneziano), by Nicolas Beatrizet and the Scultori-Ghisi Family. Their prints after compositions by Raphael, Michelangelo, Giulio Romano and others were instrumental in promoting their fame and  for the dissemination of Italian Renaissance art. In a related endeavour, these engravers sought to record and celebrate the splendours of Classical Antiquity, with Marco Dente's depiction of the Laocoön group (formerly in the Spencer Collection) as a prime example for the archaeological interest and sensibility of the age.

A few decades later in the Low Countries, artists such as Hendrick Goltzius and the Antwerp publisher Hieronymus Cock became the leading printmakers in Europe. A first state-impression of The Alchemist is an outstanding example for the many prints published by Cock after Pieter Bruegel’s quirky inventions, while Mars and Venus surprised by Vulcan by Goltzius epitomises his high mannerist style and the eroticised courtly culture of the period. With estimates ranging from £100 to £100,000 this auction is an opportunity to acquire some of the most celebrated, fascinating and outright curious images of western art.

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    Our specialist’s selection

    Brought to you by

    Stefano Franceschi

    Junior Specialist | Prints & Multiples

    Stefano Franceschi, Junior Specialist, joined Christie’s Prints & Multiples department in 2017, following a position at the British Museum in the Prints and Drawings Study Room. A native Italian speaker and fluent in English, Stefano travels regularly to Italy to source works for the live and online London auctions. His interests and knowledge extend from the 15th century to the present, with a special fondness for Italian Old Master prints but also for Contemporary Editions – for which he is Head of Sale in London.

    Stefano is heavily involved with the Old Master Prints auctions and valuations of important private collections, including the single-owner online auction ‘Three Northern Masters’ (July 2019) and the Old Master Prints Sale in December 2019, where very rare Italian and Northern prints from the Collection of the Late Professor Eric Stanley set several record prices including for Hendrik Goltzius’ ‘The Dragon devouring the Companions of Cadmus’ (sold for £75,000).

    He holds a Master’s Degree in ‘Economy and Management of Arts and Cultural Activities’ from Università Ca’ Foscari in Venice, gained with full marks and laude. There, he focused on Old Master Printmaking with Prof. Giovanni Fara, writing a dissertation on the Prints’ Market and Collecting in the second half of 16th century’s Venice.

    How to find us

    8 King Street St. James 's

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    8 King Street St. James 's

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