Colnaghi Foundation Journal 04 - Page 144



142
Selling Botticelli to America: Colnaghi, Bernard Berenson and the sale of the Madonna of the Eucharist to Isabella Stewart Gardner
Fig. 5 / Sir Muirhead Bone,
The Colnaghi Gallery at
13-14 Pall Mall East, 1911,
London, Colnaghi Archive.
Fig. 6 / Lombardi & Co,
photograph of Otto
Gutekunst of Colnaghi,
ca.1900, Florence, Biblioteca
Berenson, Villa I Tatti.
For Gardner, as for Berenson, Botticelli was a master
Once indeed, he [the Christ Child] guides her
with a particular allure, connected with the aesthetic
hand to transcribe in a book the words of her
movement and the lush writings of Walter Pater; the
exaltation, the Ave, and the Magnificat and the
latter had included in his collection of essays entitled
Gaude Maria, and the young angels, glad to
The Renaissance, published in the 1870s, a famous purple
rouse her for a moment from her dejection, are
passage describing Botticelli’s Madonna of the Magnificat
eager to hold the ink-horn and to support the
(fig. 7) in terms which reflected the world-weary mood
book. But the pen almost drops from her hand,
of late nineteenth century aestheticism:
and the high cold words have no meaning for her.
Selling Botticelli to America: Colnaghi, Bernard Berenson and the sale of the Madonna of the Eucharist to Isabella Stewart Gardner
Fig. 7 / Sandro
Botticelli, Madonna
of the Magnificat, ca.
1483, tempera on
panel, diameter, 118
cm, Florence, Gallerie
degli Uffizi.
143

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