Enfilade

New Acqusitions at LACMA: Baratta’s ‘Wealth’ and ‘Prudence’

Posted in museums by Editor on December 10, 2011

Giovanni Baratta (1640-1747), Pair of Allegorical Figures – "Wealth" and "Prudence," ca. 1703-08, photo © 2011 Museum Associates/LACMA

Press release from LACMA:

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art has acquired two life-size allegorical figure statues by the late Florentine Baroque master, Giovanni Baratta (1640–1747). The rediscovery of these sculptures, Wealth and Prudence, has been recognized as a major contribution to the study of early eighteenth-century Florentine art. The works are generous gifts to the museum by long-time benefactor, The Ahmanson Foundation, which has contributed extensively to the development of LACMA’s collection of European Painting and Sculpture over the last forty years. The sculptures are on view on the third floor of the Ahmanson Building, in the recently reinstalled European galleries.

Originally part of one of the artist’s most illustrious commissions, the works are noted for their refined elegance. The sculptures were commissioned by Niccolò Maria Giugni (1672-1717) for the gallery in his Palazzo on the Via degli Alfani in Florence. Facing one another at either end of the gallery, they were part of an elaborate iconographic scheme intended to glorify the Medici family and celebrate the Giugni family’s allegiance to the Medici. The choice of Wealth and Prudence was particularly appropriate to illustrate the joint virtues of the families, as some members of the Giugni family had advised the Medici in various aspects of their governance. (more…)

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