Wholesale Lot of 500 Print Folios After Michelangelo by Amilcare Pizzi

Quantity available: 1

Included here are 500 portfolios each containing 14 prints produced in 1970 by the renowned Italian lithographer, Amilcare Pizzi (1891-1974), depicting some of the most important drawings by Michelangelo. 

Each embossed portfolio measures 17.25" high and 12.5" wide and contains 14 sepia-toned prints on rusticus paper, plus a six page essay in Italian by the respected art historian, Mario Monteverdi, on paper comparable to that of the prints themselves with three-hole stitched binding, plus its original protective cardboard mailer (not shown). Monteverdi is known as the author of The Book of Art, Italian Art to 1850, published in 1971 by Grolier.

All folios and their contents are in mint or excellent condition, having remained untouched and carefully stored in climate controlled conditions since their production in 1970. Twelve lithographs are printed on sheets measuring 12.25" wide by 17" high and two lithographs are 17" wide by 24.5" high and folded in the center. Margins vary from approximately half inch to three inches.

Shown here is plate 1 entitled Due Figure Ammantate (Two Cloaked Figures) after the original residing in the Louvre.

Additional images forwarded upon request.

Only two drawings represented in the folio are widely marketed in print or poster form: Madonna and Child from the Casa Buonarroti and The Sybil from Lybia from the Louvre. As such, this portfolio represents a truly unique investment opportunity for a large dealer or marketer of prints and posters.

Monteverdi's text is mounted on five pages of the same size and quality as the prints, and reviews Michelangelo's attitude regarding the importance of drawing and its relevance to his development in other art forms. The text also contains a history of these drawings within the context of the artist's life.

These prints bear a remarkable resemblance in quality and appearance to the master's originals. James Beck (1930-2007), Professor of Art History at Columbia University and a leading authority on Italian Renaissance painting and sculpture, wrote this after viewing these lithographs: "I find them to be of uniquely high quality. They are exact scale reproductions that come as close to the originals as is now possible. Indeed they are so handsome that they could be framed and exhibited, and stand on their own as a reminder of Michelangelo's greatness as a draughtsman."

The prints are so well rendered that the Casa Buonarroti museum in Florence exhibits six prints from this portfolio, instead of the precious and extremely fragile originals. The other original drawings represented in this portfolio are on display in the Louvre, the British Museum and the Metropolitan, among others.These folios were produced only once in 1970 in a limited edition and marketed by the Italian firm of ICIM & PBS at retail price of $300 each. (When applying the impact of inflation, this value in 1970 equates to over $2,000 in today's dollars.) Individual prints periodically appear and sell online for $30 to $50. The retail value of this lot of 500 folios (7,000 prints) is $210,000+.

Our client purchased the lot directly from ICIM & PBS prior to the firm's closure over forty years ago. He owns the only known quantity of unsold folios and they are currently not available through any retailer, etailer or distributor anywhere in the world. These folios are offered exclusively here at a discounted wholesale price of $36 each, just 12% of the original retail price of $300, equaling a cost of $2.57 per print. We will be glad to deliver a folio for evaluation at no cost to qualified dealers/resellers. We are not offering individual folios for sale.

Print titles, methods, descriptions, and location of the original drawings are as follows:

I. Two Cloaked Figures (Pen and red chalk on paper.) c1494. Copy and interpretation of Giotto's fresco in the Peruzzi Chapel in the Church of Santa Croce, Florence. Louvre.

II. A Philosopher (Pen, black lead pencil and red chalk on paper.) c1501-02. Researchers recognize this figure as a philosopher, perhaps of the stature of Leonardo da Vinci, who would have been about 50 years old. British Museum, London.

III. Study of Mercury-Apollo (Pen on paper.) c1502-04. Louvre, Paris.

IV. Studies of Horses (Pen on paper.) c1504-06. Study for some of the details of the "Battle of Cascina", a fresco that was unfortunately never realized. Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

V. Nude for "The Battle of Cascina" (Pen with outlines in black lead pencil.) c1504-06. A preparatory study like the preceeding drawing. Casa Buonarroti, Florence.

VI. Study for "The Sybil from Lybia" (Red chalk and black lead pencil.) Study for the finished fresco that adorns the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel that was completed in 1508-12. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

VII. Madonna with Baby (Black lead, red chalk and gypsum on prepared paper.) c1520-30. Likely a study for a future sculpture, notably the "Madonna with Baby", located in the Medici Chapel, Florence. Casa Buonarroti, Florence.

VIII. Study of a Female Head (Red chalk on paper.) Preparatory drawing for "Leda and the Swan", executed around 1530 for the Duke Alfonso d'Este. Casa Buonarroti, Florence.

IX. The Resurrection of Christ (Black lead pencil on paper.) c1532-33. Considered by many to be one of the greatest studies of the theme of resurrection and redemption through Christ. British Museum, London.

X. Ensemble Study for "The Final Judgement" (Black pen on paper.) c1533-34. Study for the "Final Judgement" fresco that adorns one complete wall of the Sistine Chapel, Vatican City, Rome. Casa Buonarroti, Florence.

XI. Study for "The Annunciation" (Black lead pencil on paper.) c1540-42. British Museum, London.

XII. Cardboard Study "The Crucifixion of St. Peter" (Cardboard composed of 19 layers pinned and applied on canvas.) 1542. The only drawing in this portfolio that differs from the original in size, which measures 105" by 61". Museo di Capodimonte, Naples.

XIII. Christ Crucified, The Madonna and St. John (Black lead pencil on paper.) c1555. Entitled "Pentimento" (change of mind) relating to the artist's change of heart felt while rendering Christ's left arm. Louvre, Paris.

XIV. Architectural Projects (Black lead, pen, red chalk and watercolor.) 1525. Study for a project for the Laurentian Library, commissioned by Pope Clemente VII. Casa Buonarroti, Florence.

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