Provenance as a history of change: from Caliari in Scotland to Tintoretto in America: the commercial and connoisseurial trajectories of a Venetian portrait

Provenance as a history of change: from Caliari in Scotland to Tintoretto in America: the... Abstract The Boston Museum of Fine Arts owns a Portrait of a Young Man now attributed to Domenico Robusti, son of Jacopo Tintoretto. This article documents for the first time the painting’s earlier provenance and its later arrival on the London art market. The hitherto unexamined papers of John Waldie, a wealthy Scottish collector, record his acquisition of the portrait at Venice in 1836 as a work by Carlo Caliari, the son of Paolo Veronese. In 1927 the portrait was sold, still as Caliari, by Waldie’s descendants to London art dealers Agnew’s for £800. Following expert advice from Wilhelm von Bode, Tancred Borenius, Lionello Venturi and Charles Ricketts, Agnew’s reattributed it to Jacopo Tintoretto before selling it to the Boston Museum for $75,000 (about £15,000). A comparison of these two key moments shows how art trade and connoisseurship had a joint impact on the history of the painting. Provenance – the investigation of historical ownership and circulation of objects – is gaining increasing importance in art historical investigations.1 As Gail Feigenbaum and Inge Reist have noted, at its best the study of provenance expands beyond the realm of property transfers of works of art and interrogates ‘ideas and narratives about the origins and itineraries of objects’ by drawing attention to ‘the transformative power of ownership’.2 The relationship between owners and works of art, they argue, can ‘change irrevocably the way that works will be perceived and understood by future generations’.3 The study of provenance, thus, with its emphasis on the social life of objects stimulates an interdisciplinary conversation between art historians, anthropologists, sociologists and economic historians. It is also germane to histories of collecting. This article follows the lead offered by Feigenbaum and Reist in order to explore the critical and commercial trajectory of a Venetian portrait at two key moments of its historical ownership. The first occurred in the fourth decade of the nineteenth century, when it travelled from Venice to Kelso in the Scottish Borders and entered the collection of a wealthy amateur art collector and theatrical enthusiast, John Waldie. The second happened nearly one hundred years later, in the third decade of the twentieth century, when the painting arrived on the London art market as the property of art dealers ‘Tho.s Agnew and Sons’ (Agnew’s) and was sold to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts via Agnew’s New York branch. The portrait in question came to wide public attention first in December 1927, when the Boston Museum acquired a portrait of a young man, then attributed to Jacopo Robusti (1519–1594), known as Tintoretto (Fig. 1).4 This painting was deemed to represent the youthful Alessandro Farnese (1545–1592), Duke of Parma from 1586. To mark this acquisition a celebratory article, written by the Boston Museum’s Assistant Director, Alice Child Jenckes, was published in the institution’s own journal.5 Jenckes noted the portrait’s provenance: Fig. 1. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Young Man, attributed to Domenico Tintoretto (in 1836 attributed to Carletto Caliari and in 1927 to Jacopo Tintoretto), 1580–1585. Oil on canvas, 64.8 x 55.3 cm. Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Fig. 1. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Young Man, attributed to Domenico Tintoretto (in 1836 attributed to Carletto Caliari and in 1927 to Jacopo Tintoretto), 1580–1585. Oil on canvas, 64.8 x 55.3 cm. Boston Museum of Fine Arts. For more than a century the picture has been in a private collection in Scotland, whither it was brought from Italy by a direct ancestor of the family. It has never been called to the attention of the outside world, and its very seclusion has prevented European scholars from access to it.6 Over seventy years later the Boston Museum reattributed this painting to Domenico Robusti (1560–1635), son of Tintoretto, and discarded the identification of the sitter as Alessandro Farnese describing the work simply as Portrait of a Young Man. The known provenance of the portrait is currently traced as follows on the Museum’s website: Around 1830, possibly Sir Richard John Griffith (b.1784–d.1878), Hendersyde Park, Kelso, Borders, Scotland [see note 1]; by descent within the family to Sir Richard John Waldie Griffith (b. 1850), 3d Bart., and Lady Waldie Griffith, Hendersyde Park; 1927, sold by Lady Waldie Griffith to Agnew and Sons, London (stock no. 6753); 1927, sold by Agnew to the mfa. (Accession Date: December 29, 1927). Notes: [1] Letters from Colin Agnew of Agnew and Sons, London, to Edward J. Holmes of the mfa (December 6, 1927 and December 10, 1927, in mfa curatorial file) reveal that the painting had ‘been [at Hendersyde Park] for at least a century, having been brought there by an ancestor of the recent owner’ and ‘brought to the British Isles a hundred years ago’.7 Records in the Agnew’s archive, now held at the National Gallery in London, shed further light on this sale. A copy of a letter dated 29 December 1927, from an unidentified sender to the head of the firm Colin Agnew (1882–1975), refers to the purchase of the ‘Tintoretto Farnese Boy’ from Lady Waldie-Griffith.8 By late-1927 Agnew’s had confirmed an identification of the sitter as a youthful Alessandro Farnese and an attribution to Jacopo Tintoretto. However, when this painting was first entered in Agnew’s stock book it was attributed to ‘Cagliari’ with this name deleted and ‘Tintoretto’ added above (Fig. 2).9 ‘Cagliari’ or ‘Caliari’, of course, is the adopted family name of Paolo Veronese (1528–1588), a contemporary of Jacopo Tintoretto and his major rival in Venice.10 The stock book also contains an additional note: ‘Certified photo from Dr Bode and brochure from Borenius’, references to Wilhelm von Bode (1845–1929), the famous director of the Berlin museums and formidable art connoisseur, and Tancred Borenius (1885–1948), the Finnish art historian appointed in 1922 as the first professor of history of art at University College, London, and one of the founders of the art magazine Apollo in 1925.11 The stock book entry also indicates that Borenius, who had a broad knowledge of Venetian Renaissance painters, received a payment from Agnew’s for writing an essay on this painting.12 Colin Agnew, who had run the company’s Berlin gallery before the First World War, knew Bode and Borenius well and he had previously consulted them for advice on attributions.13 Fig. 2. View largeDownload slide Detail from the Agnew’s Stock Books: Stock Book 10, entry no. 6753, showing the change of attribution from ‘Cagliari’ to ‘Tintoretto’. London, National Gallery Archive. Fig. 2. View largeDownload slide Detail from the Agnew’s Stock Books: Stock Book 10, entry no. 6753, showing the change of attribution from ‘Cagliari’ to ‘Tintoretto’. London, National Gallery Archive. John Waldie’s 1836 purchase: a self-portrait by Carletto Caliari Newly found evidence has revealed more details on the provenance of the portrait. As noted above, the painting was sold to Agnew’s in 1927 by Lady Waldie-Griffith, née Alice Maud Pearson (d.1955). Alice was the third wife of Sir Richard Waldie-Griffith (1850–1933), who married her at Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia when aged seventy-six.14 Sir Richard had succeeded to the family’s baronetcy and its estates at Kelso on the death of his father in 1889. Much of the family’s considerable wealth was derived from lucrative mining properties in Bohemia (now part of the Czech Republic), although Sir Richard lost most of this fortune in unwise share dealing just before the First World War, hence the 1927 and 1928 dispersal of the collection at auction.15 As noted in the Boston Museum provenance, this painting had been inherited by Sir Richard from his grandfather Sir Richard John Griffith (1784–1878). However, as Colin Agnew’s letter to the Boston Museum also stated, it is necessary to go further back down this family line in order to identify the first purchaser of this portrait. As indicated by the double-barrelled name Waldie-Griffith, the family combined two distinct ancestral lines. George Waldie (d.1826) acquired the Hendersyde estate through the marriage of his father John to Jean, the eldest daughter and heiress of Charles Ormston of Hendersyde, an old Kelso family. George was an industrialist who enjoyed the profits of extensive mining interests in the Newcastle collieries, and the Hendersyde estate was inherited by his eldest son John Waldie (1781–1865). The Waldies were an artistic family. John’s younger sisters Jane Waldie, later known as Mrs Watts (1793–1826), and Charlotte Ann Waldie (1788–1859) were both authors and artists of talent.16 John, a lifelong bachelor, became an art collector (especially of Italian old master paintings), theatre critic and writer, compiling detailed records of his acquisitions of paintings and other works of art in numerous journals. At his death in 1865 the estate passed to the eldest son of John’s sister Maria Jane Waldie (1786–1865).17 She had married the distinguished Irish geologist and mining engineer Richard Griffith (1784–1878), who was created 1st Baronet in April 1858.18 Their son George (1820–89), 2nd Baronet, took the name Waldie-Griffith. George had a son, Sir Richard, whose wife Alice sold the painting to Agnew’s in 1927. The key figure, therefore, in the acquisition of this portrait for the Hendersyde estate is John Waldie.19 Waldie, still a figure unexplored by modern historians of collecting, amassed a large, if slightly haphazard, collection of works of art. Its 1835 catalogue already counted 265 pictures as well as sculpture, bronzes and manuscripts. The paintings were displayed throughout the rooms of the family mansion of Hendersyde Park (Fig. 3), and included principally works ascribed to old masters such as Nicolas Poussin, Agnolo Bronzino, Annibale Carracci, Guido Reni, Titian, Diego Velázquez, Meindert Hobbema and many other names typically favoured by early nineteenth-century collectors of Old Masters.20 The catalogue admitted with honesty that many pictures were attributed with little or no certainty. Nevertheless, it certified proudly their Italian provenance, as the pictures ‘were principally collected by Mr. Waldie, in London, or in Italy; and chiefly in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Milan, and Naples’.21 Provenance thus reinforced their credentials as originals: even if not quite belonging to those to whom they were ascribed, the paintings were ‘almost entirely the works, or of the Schools, of the ancient Masters’.22 No painting that can be identified with the the Boston Museum portrait is listed in this first catalogue. Fig. 3. View largeDownload slide Hendersyde Park, frontispiece of the 1859 Catalogue of the Waldie Collection. London, British Library. Fig. 3. View largeDownload slide Hendersyde Park, frontispiece of the 1859 Catalogue of the Waldie Collection. London, British Library. John Waldie, however, undertook another extensive period of travel in Europe and Asia which lasted almost two years (from August 1836 until June 1838), visiting France, Switzerland, Savoy, Italy, the Ionian Islands, Greece, Asia Minor, Turkey, Hungary and Austria before returning to London via France.23 Throughout these travels he continued to acquire works of art, especially when in Italy. In 1859 Waldie published a second catalogue of his art collection.24 This revised edition was necessitated by the increased quantity of works in his possession. As the preface stated, The lapse of 24 years since the First Edition of this Catalogue was printed, and the acquisition of several fine Pictures and Busts, especially since the year 1845, have made it necessary to make an entirely new Catalogue, as the arrangement of the former has unavoidably been changed, and a number of other articles have been added besides new Pictures, Busts, and Columns.25 The catalogue also witnessed an increased confidence regarding the importance of the collection. If the first edition was almost apologetic about its uneven quality, the collection was now presented proudly, stating that it included a ‘noble and most striking Picture’, the Vision of Jacob by Guido Reni, and a ‘superb gem’, a Holy Family belonging to the School of Raphael.26 The Waldie collection however, possibly on account of its lack of acknowledged masterpieces and its remote location, escaped the attention of art surveys such as those of Johann David Passavant (published in 1836) and Gustav Friedrich Waagen (1854) and has remained, until now, unknown to scholars. Nevertheless, it is likely that its catalogues conceal under now-discredited attributions many works currently held in museum collections worldwide, and this article sheds new light on one of them, which the 1859 catalogue listed thus: Carlo Cagliari: 14. Portrait of himself when very young. It has a vigour and brilliancy of color worthy of his uncle [sic] Paolo Veronese, of whom he was the best pupil. Obtained at Venice in 1836.27 The travel diary of John Waldie, confirms that the painting was purchased in Venice in 1836. During his stay there, which lasted from 14 until 30 November, Waldie saw a large number of pictures.28 He admired them in churches and in established public and private collections (as in the Palazzo Manfrin, of which he gives an extensive description), but also in the premises of gentlemen-dealers who wished to sell them.29 For instance, on the day of his arrival in Venice, Waldie met with an art dealer named Giustiniani, from whom he had purchased pictures during his previous visit to the city nine years earlier. Waldie was immediately charmed by ‘A fine Bacchus and Ariadne not very large and quite in the Guido style by Simone [Cantarini] di Pesaro’.30 Even if Waldie saw other dealers, such as ‘Signor Biasion’, at first he had no intention of buying anything, dismissing the pictures viewed as ‘none tempting’ and pitched ‘at ridiculous prices’.31 Waldie soon encountered and befriended a British banker, always referred to as ‘Mr. Holmes’, who invited Waldie at his home for dinner and evening parties, and also provided him with new contacts with picture dealers.32 On 19 November Waldie went to see one of these, ‘Signor Romano’, who had ‘a small collection for sale’.33 Waldie professed to like none of Romano’s pictures, ‘except a St. Mark’s place by Marieschi, a ½ length of Carlo Cagliari said to be by Paolo Veronese’ and a landscape ‘by Tiepolo by Cimaroli or Cimolara’.34 Waldie soon changed his mind about purchasing and on 21 November left his lodgings in the morning to acquire Cantarini’s Bacchus and Ariadne from Giustiniani, ‘along with a view said to be by Canaletti’ and ‘a small full length female portrait by Tiepolo’. Waldie makes no record of how much he paid for these works, but it must not have been a large sum, as he noted with glee that the Bacchus and Ariadne alone ‘was worth twice as much as I gave for the whole’.35 Waldie went to visit Romano again on 23 November and purchased ‘2 fine views’ by Guardi, ‘the pretty little landscape’ by Cimaroli, the Marieschi, and, most importantly for our narrative, ‘the fine portrait by Carlo Cagliari of himself or rather it is supposed to be done by the daughter of Paolo’.36 Waldie’s collecting can be interpreted as an integral part of his social activities in Italy. He was a voracious collector but not a ‘philologist’ connoisseur: he showed more interest in the subject of the pictures, their narrative content, style and design rather than in their fully documented pedigree and certainty of authorship. In fact, he did not mind that the landscape by Cimaroli was a version of a work by Tiepolo, that his Cantarini was painted ‘in the Guido style’ and was a smaller replica of a larger work in the Manfrin collection. He also seemed not to care that the portrait of Carletto Caliari, at first presented to him as by Paolo Veronese, was eventually sold to him as a ‘school’ work: a self-portrait by Carletto or even by Veronese’s daughter. Waldie often privileged quantity to quality, he also liked bargaining and was eager to purchase at low prices: in his diary he records his great pleasure at having purchased two works by Ghisolfi for only £2 each.37 The following Saturday, 29 November, the portrait was presented by Holmes to Waldie, already packed together with the other works he had purchased, and ready to be shipped to London the following week.38 We can now identify this picture, then tentatively attributed to Carletto Caliari, with the painting presently owned by the Boston Museum. The evidence is firm: there are no other comparable pictures listed in Waldie’s 1859 catalogue of his collections and neither have any sources been located to suggest that John Waldie’s heirs or any other member of their respective families, acquired the Boston Museum portrait at some later date. Of most significance is the evidence from Agnew’s stock book in which the painter was first entered as ‘Cagliari’ (see Fig. 2). Colin Agnew’s 1927 sale: Alessandro Farnese by Jacopo Tintoretto Why did Agnew’s reattribute the painting from Caliari to Tintoretto? Was it simply because a work by the hand of Jacopo Tintoretto was worth more than one by the son of Veronese? Financial considerations were certainly important, but they provide only a partial explanation of the story. In his 2006 essay ‘Tradesmen as Scholars’, Ivan Gaskell has reconstructed examples of relationships between dealers and scholars from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries to contend that the art trade is not moved exclusively by monetary concerns, and argued for ‘a total interdependency between market and scholarship’.39 The history of this painting, and its changed attribution in 1927, presents a nexus of scholarship and trade that supports Gaskell’s argument. It is, however, also a significant case-study in its own right which sheds light on the critical reception of Jacopo Tintoretto at the time. If, as Gaskell states, ‘each generation, by means of its own chosen scholarly means, defines for itself the Rembrandt oeuvre it deserves’, what does this example tell us about the significance of Tintoretto in the 1920s? Was it spurred on by commercial greed, critical re-examination, wider Zeitgeist or a combination of all three? In the mid-1920s Agnew’s was a firm if not in crisis then certainly in flux, as the art trade was changing rapidly and becoming an increasingly difficult and risky business. Letters in the Agnew’s archive demonstrate the firm’s need for an increasing overdraft and its necessity to generate liquidity quickly.40 The 1920s witnessed a dramatic rise in the prices of works of art (they were soon to crash in equally dramatic fashion in the 1930s).41 If the £70,000 paid by the National Gallery in London for Raphael’s Ansidei Madonna remained a price pinnacle for nearly twenty-five years, higher and higher prices were recorded in the 1920s. In 1926 Henry E. Huntington paid Duveen £176,000 for Gainsborough’s Blue Boy (Huntington Museum, San Marino); in 1929 the National Gallery in London acquired the Vendramin Family by Titian from the Duke of Northumberland for £122,000 and Andrew Mellon bought Raphael’s Large Cowper Madonna (Washington, National Gallery of Art) from Duveen for £172,800.42 At the beginning of 1929, summarizing the 1927 season, art commentator A.C.R. Carter in The Year’s Art marvelled at the richness of sales in that year, when 130 pictures sold for more than 1,400 guineas (£1,470), surpassing easily the record of the annus mirabilis 1919, when 100 pictures had sold for more than that sum.43 The rise in prices of works of art meant that dealers could command high commissions, but it also meant that the owners of the paintings too expected increasingly higher returns, especially when their works were certainly ascribed to well-known artists. For instance, in the same year as the Farnese Boy purchase, a painting by Titian, Man with a Falcon (Omaha Art Museum) was purchased by Agnew’s in joint account with Duveen Brothers for £33,000 in 1927.44 With increasing debts, large overheads and non-paying customers, profitable art trading depended on three conditions: the first, to be able to interpret signals from the market and identify the emerging artists whose value was ascending rapidly; the second, to find what in contemporary art market parlance are called ‘sleepers’ – artworks whose real value has been missed by their owners and by rival dealers because they have been misattributed; and, last but not least, to sell to the cash-rich American market.45 The Farnese Boy was to satisfy all three criteria. The first was met immediately: Agnew’s reattributed the portrait to Jacopo Tintoretto and identified its subject as Alessandro Farnese. As a Venetian portrait by a lesser master, it was only marginally desirable, but as work by Tintoretto it was much more so. In 1961 Gerard Reitlinger in his oft-cited study of prices of works of art, The Economics of Taste, lamented the low commercial lure of Tintoretto: Tintoretto never recovered from the basting he received in Reynolds’s discourses, and in the 1850s even the intensive propaganda of The Stones of Venice could not create a market for him. Or perhaps it would be more truthful to say that Tintoretto’s easel works had never been popular at any time. The distortions (half way to El Greco), the impure pigments, the oil-sketch character of most of the works, the difficulty of determining school pieces – all have contributed.46 Auction data gathered by Graves until 1913 support Reitlinger’s statement, and saleroom reports by The Times in the late 1910s and early 1920s also record low Tintoretto resale prices, which picked up only towards the end of the decade.47 But auction prices tell only one side of the story. In fact, Tintoretto was gaining increased importance in the first decades of the twentieth century. As Anna Laura Lepschy has pointed out, a new critical re-examination of Tintoretto as a ‘modern artist’ had been developing since the late 1800s and the 1920s were a particularly significant decade within his reassessment.48 In 1920 Emile Bernard had put Tintoretto in the company of Manet and Cézanne and praised his modernity, expressed in a ‘completely new intellectual art’, that showed ‘ease of conception’ and ‘perfect balance of composition’.49 To Lepschy’s observations we can add that, in parallel to this novel critical interpretation of Tintoretto, connoisseurs were examining Venetian painting with a renewed interest and closer attention in order to distinguish stylistically this master’s oeuvre. A new corpus of works by Tintoretto was being established. The research by German art historian Detlev von Hadeln (1878–1935) in the late 1910s and early 1920s was particularly significant.50 Hadeln studied the drawings of Tintoretto and applied a careful stylistic and technical analysis to ascribe work to this artist. Connoisseurship and criticism, however, were soon to be joined by commerce. In the course of the 1920s many London dealers advertised works by Tintoretto for sale, especially in the pages of the Burlington Magazine (Figs 4–5).51 His portraits were in particular demand, a preference perhaps also spurred on by Agnew’s sale of the Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini to the National Gallery (via the National Art-Collections Fund) in 1924 for £14,000 (Fig. 6).52 Owning paintings by the ‘modern’ Tintoretto was en vogue and several museums, especially American, purchased works ascribed to this master in the 1920s.53 Colin Agnew was well aware of this trend: in 1927 he wrote to Anthony de Rothschild stating how in his recent visit to the United States he had realized the extent to which ‘the interest in Titian and Tintoretto has greatly increased among collectors and museum directors there’.54 Records in the Agnew’s archive witness several shipments of Venetian paintings from London to New York; in October 1927 alone, five male portraits ascribed to Tintoretto (including the Farnese Boy) left Agnew’s London premises for their New York branch.55 Museum acquisitions often presented particularly intricate connections of scholarship and commerce. For example, Hadeln himself, who had been selected by the art collector John Ringling as one of the directors of his newly opened museum in Sarasota, had a preferential relationship with the Munich and Lucerne art dealer Julius Böhler and at least once he wrote about a work by Tintoretto in the dealer’s stock.56 Both Borenius and Hadeln occasionally sold to Agnew’s in the period 1925–29.57 Although these linkages were not necessarily dishonest, there existed factions (and frictions between them): some museums had preferred dealers whom they trusted more than others. Fig. 4. View largeDownload slide Notices of portraits ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto in the Burlington Magazine: Portrait of a Gentleman, for sale at Max Rothschild (London) in December 1925 and A Venetian Senator, for sale at the Ehrich Galleries (New York) in December 1927. Fig. 4. View largeDownload slide Notices of portraits ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto in the Burlington Magazine: Portrait of a Gentleman, for sale at Max Rothschild (London) in December 1925 and A Venetian Senator, for sale at the Ehrich Galleries (New York) in December 1927. Fig. 5. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Man in Armour, ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto, advertised in the Burlington Magazine of July 1929 by Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York). Fig. 5. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Man in Armour, ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto, advertised in the Burlington Magazine of July 1929 by Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York). Fig. 6. View largeDownload slide Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini by Jacopo Tintoretto, about 1575–1580. Oil on canvas, 85.3 x 52.2 cm. London, National Gallery. Fig. 6. View largeDownload slide Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini by Jacopo Tintoretto, about 1575–1580. Oil on canvas, 85.3 x 52.2 cm. London, National Gallery. Was the Farnese Boy a profitable ‘sleeper’? The sale was negotiated by a certain ‘Mr Bolton’, perhaps an employee of the firm named David C. Bolton.58 Lady Waldie-Griffith was paid £800 for this painting, with the promise of an extra £200 if the painting was to sell quickly.59 This was not an insignificant sum at the time and it was consistent with prices of works that were considered of good quality but were attributed to lesser-known artists. For instance in October 1926 the National Gallery had purchased from Agnew’s a Portrait of a Man then attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta (now ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti) for £900 (Fig. 7).60 Yet, as a work by the emerging star Tintoretto the Farnese Boy was worth considerably more, and as such Agnew’s sold it to Boston for $75,000, c.£15,000.61 Fig. 7. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Priest ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti (formerly attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta), early 1730s. Oil on canvas, 99.7 x 78.1 cm. London, National Gallery. Fig. 7. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Priest ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti (formerly attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta), early 1730s. Oil on canvas, 99.7 x 78.1 cm. London, National Gallery. Even if we consider the high cost noted by Agnew’s in the shipment records of the painting – £1,283 – the sale of this portrait gave Agnew’s a profit margin of over £13,500.62 The Farnese Boy was, undoubtedly, a very profitable sleeper. It would, however, be rash to judge Agnew’s re-attribution to Tintoretto solely as a money-making enterprise: they did not undertake this change of authorship lightly. At the time of the purchase the firm commissioned and printed three short articles written by Borenius, Lionello Venturi (1885–1961) and Charles Ricketts (1866–1931) to evaluate the painting.63 All three writers confirmed the attribution of this painting to Jacopo Tintoretto and identified its sitter as the youthful Alessandro Farnese, although this was accepted with differing levels of confidence and conviction. Borenius endorsed fully the attribution to Tintoretto, stating that because of ‘its power of physiological interpretation’, and its quality ‘of brushwork, coloring and atmosphere’ the picture must be ‘classed amongst the finest achievements of the Venetian as portrait painter’; he was, however, more cautious in his identification of the sitter.64 Venturi, a wide-ranging art historian whose publications covered sixteenth- to twentieth-century art, held no doubts. He stated that the portrait was ‘one of the most synthetic, intense and brilliant that Tintoretto ever depicted’ and ‘there can be no doubt that the sitter was Alessandro Farnese’.65 In contrast, the art connoisseur and artist Ricketts accepted the attribution to Tintoretto but was rather more circumspect over the possible identity of the sitter. He also suggested that the portrait dated not from the mid-1560s but from ‘the later years of the fifties’.66 Of course, the fact that Ricketts, Borenius and Venturi sold pictures to Agnew’s complicates this narrative of scholarship. Yet some external evidence points to this nexus as not being an exclusively commercial venture. In fact, the attribution to Tintoretto of this portrait was maintained for a very long time and was independently accepted by scholars such as Boston Museum curator – and later National Gallery director – Philip Hendy (1900–1980), who had no known connections with Agnew’s.67 It was even upheld by Bernard Berenson, who had many times professed a particular dislike for this firm.68 The fact that Venturi published this portrait again in his Pitture Italiane in America of 1931 could also indicate that his attribution to Tintoretto was proposed in good faith.69 Besides, the recent re-attribution from Jacopo to Domenico Tintoretto by the Boston Museum can be considered as an operation of connoisseurial fine-tuning, from a particular artist to his close circle, that takes account of the new evidence that has emerged on both artists rather than a complete dismissal of Agnew’s opinion. Conclusion The two key moments in the history of the painting, which we have reconstructed here, illustrate a sea-change in attitudes towards collecting and trade. The painting’s role was transformed profoundly – from marker of identity, culture and wealth in the mansion of a Scottish family to a specimen of art history in an American museum. This case reinforces clearly Feigenbaum and Reist’s narrative of provenance as a history of change. Yet, paradoxically, this portrait’s shifting roles and attributions also contain returning elements. Throughout its life the painting had fulfilled a liminal function. First in its transitioning between cultures, from Venice to Scotland and from Scotland to Boston (via London and New York). Secondly, in its changing attributions, being included either just outside the orbit of an established artist, or within the oeuvre of an artist then considered problematic. In the nineteenth century it was considered as the work of Carletto Caliari, the son of Paolo Veronese – within the circle of a celebrated artist. One century later it was attributed to Jacopo Tintoretto, at a time when the painter still enjoyed a mixed reputation. More recently, when Tintoretto has reached a firmer position in the art-historical canon, the painting has been transferred to the oeuvre of his son, Domenico. In all of these cases it has been situated in close proximity of canonical artists, without becoming part of the canon itself. The painting’s liminality has travelled across time and space. Acknowledgements We wish to thank: Richard Wragg, Archivist at the National Gallery; Agnes Penot for her invaluable help in accessing Waldie’s diary; and Frederick Ilchman and Thomas Michie at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. We are also particularly grateful to: Roger Kuin, Elizabeth Goldring, Mary Ellen Lamb and Mark Westgarth. Thanks are also due to our anonymous reader for the Journal of the History of Collections who has provided perceptive and generous feedback. Notes and references 1 In February 2008 at the College Art Association Conference (caa) in Dallas, tx, Gail Feigenbaum of the Getty Research Institute and Inge Reist of the Frick Art Reference Library, led a session titled ‘Provenance: The Transformative Power’, which was then expanded into a book: G. Feigenbaum and I. Reist (eds), Provenance. An alternate history of art (Los Angeles, 2012). See also the special issue on provenance studies in Collections: A Journal for Museum and Archives Professionals 10 (2014). Another session was held at the February 2016 caa Conference in Washington, dc, entitled ‘Career Opportunities? Teaching Provenance Research within the Field of Art History’. Museums in the USA such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York hold curator posts that specialize in provenance, and the study of provenance research is currently offered as degree course in Germany (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, and Freie Universität, Berlin) and the United Kingdom (University of Glasgow). Of great importance is also the ‘Collecting and Provenance’ research strand at the Getty Center, Los Angeles [http://www.getty.edu/research/tools/provenance/, accessed November 2016]. 2 Feigenbaum and Reist, op. cit. (note 1), p. 2. 3 Ibid. 4 The painting was bought by the museum with funds provided by two of the museum’s donors, Henrietta Fitz (‘Mrs. W. Scott Fitz’) and Robert Treat Paine, 2nd; it is therefore recorded as their gift. See T. Jefferson Coolidge, ‘Report of the President’, Annual Report for the Year . . . (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) 54 (1929), pp. 11–16. Henrietta Fitz was the mother of the Boston Museum Fine Arts director Edward Jackson Holmes. See her portrait in the museum collection, available online [http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/mrs-w-scott-fitz-mother-of-edward-jackson-holmes-261009, accessed November 2016]. Robert Treat Paine 2nd (d. 1929) was the son of Boston philanthropist Robert Treat Paine (1835–1910). On 24 March 1961 a copy of the portrait was sold at Christie’s; illustrated in Burlington Magazine 103 (1961), p. xiv. 5 A.C.J. [A. Child Jenckes], ‘Portrait of Alessandro Farnese, by Tintoretto’, Bulletin of the Museum of Fine Arts 36 (1928), pp. 2–3. This issue of the Bulletin included a reproduction of the portrait as its front cover. Jenckes was appointed assistant to the director in February 1927, see ‘Notes’, Museum of Fine Arts Bulletin 25 (1927), p. 10. 6 Jenckes, op. cit. (note 5), p. 2. 7 The full catalogue entry of this painting is available online, on the Boston Museum of Fine Arts website: [http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/portrait-of-a-young-man-32299, accessed November 2016]. 8 National Gallery Archive (hereafter cited as nga), nga27/11/1/330. 9 nga, nga27/1/1/12 stock book 10 (hereafter cited as sb 10) stock no. 6753. 10 On the names assumed by Tintoretto and Veronese, see T. Nichols, Tintoretto: Tradition and Identity (London, 1999, 2015 edn), 17--19. 11 sb 10, n. 6753. On Borenius, see D. Farr, ‘Borenius, (Carl) Tancred (1885–1948)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/76085, accessed November 2016]. Much has been written about Bode, see T. W. Gaehtgens and B. Paul (eds), Wilhelm Bode, Mein Leben (Berlin, 1997), esp. vol. ii, ‘Kommentarband’; Metzler Kunsthistoriker Lexikon: zweihundert Porträts deutschsprachiger Autoren aus vier Jahrhunderten (Stuttgart, 2007), pp. 32--35; J. J. Sheehan, Museums in the German Art World: From the end of the Old Regime to the rise of Modernism (Oxford, 2000), pp. 142--3, 157--9. 12 sb 10, no. 6753. For examples of Borenius’s scholarship on Tintoretto, see ‘A seascape by Tintoretto’, Apollo 2 (1925), p. 249; ‘A great Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1932), pp. 99--104. 13 On the relationship between Colin Agnew and Bode, see [G. Agnew], Agnew’s 1817–1967 (London, 1968), p. 45. Borenius had already authenticated other paintings for Agnew’s: see for instance the photograph of a Portrait of a Gentleman identified by Borenius as by Bernardino Licinio, nga, nga27/32/1/40. 14 [Obituary], Western Australian, 27 July 1933, p. 13 [http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/waldie-griffith-sir-richard-13761, accessed November 2016]. Agnew’s had also purchased an 1828 Portrait of Lady Waldie by Robert Edmonstone from Lady Waldie-Griffith together with the Caliari/Tintoretto portrait, see sb 10, no. 6754, illustrated here in Fig. 2. 15 In March 1932 Richard Waldie-Griffith brought before the Central European Court an action against an individual called Petschek who had purchased the bulk of his Bohemian mining shares for £100,000, even though they were later valued at £5,000,000. Sir Richard’s third wife Alice represented him (since he was then aged about 82) but the court found against him: op. cit. [Obituary] (note 14), p. 13. See also National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh, Waldie-Griffith of Hendersyde Park, papers on coalmines in Bohemia, gb234/ gd1/378. It was widely recorded in various Australian newspapers (including Perth’s Daily News, 6 October 1933) that after his death on 26 July 1933 Waldie-Griffith’s estate was valued at only £1,495. Lady Waldie-Griffith continued to pursue the family’s Bohemian mining shares claim for some twenty years after Sir Richard’s death. The Argos, 7 November 1955 [http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/71778520, accessed November 2016]. The Waldie-Griffith collection was dispersed at auction at Christie’s on 22 December 1927 and at Sotheby’s on 27 June 1928; notably a Portrait of Mrs Griffith (née Bramston) by George Romney was sold for 5,200 guineas (£5,460). See ‘The Art Sales of 1927’, The Year’s Art (1928), p. 301. 16 On the Waldie sisters, see C. L. Taylor, ‘Eaton, Charlotte Anne (1788–1859)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/28448, accessed November 2016]. 17 F. Burwick, The Journal of John Waldie Theatre Commentaries 1798–1830, eScholarship, University of California, Los Angeles, ca, 2008, pp. 1--4, quoting a memoir of John Waldie by his godson Sir George Douglas, ‘Overstrain versus Ennui’, Weekly Scotsman, September 1927. Historic Environment Scotland, Hendersyde Park gdl00210 [http://portal.historicenvironment.scot/designation/gdl00210, accessed November 2016]. 18 On Sir Richard Griffith, see A.W. Skempton, A Biographical Dictionary of Civil Engineers in Great Britain and Ireland (London, 2002), p. 274. 19 The bulk of John Waldie’s personal papers and journals are now preserved in the University of California Los Angeles Library, Department of Special Collections (ucla Catalog Record id: 4233947). These comprise seven volumes of letters addressed to Waldie; seventy-four journal volumes, eleven volumes concerning his international travels derived from his journals; and one volume of passports (covering the period 1827–1837). [http://www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/tf2r29n94n/admin/, accessed November 2016]. See also Yale University Library, Osborn d331, for Waldie’s diary for the period 11 May 1801–23 March 1803 [http://orbexpress.library.yale.edu/vwebv/holdingsInfo?bibId=7041426, accessed November 2016]. Brief attention in paid to Waldie as a collector in P. B. Humfrey, T. Clifford, A. Weston-Lewis and M. Bury, The Age of Titian: Venetian Renaissance Art from Scottish Collections (Edinburgh, 2004) pp. 51, 419--20. The Boston portrait was then identified in error with Waldie’s Head of a Man with Lace Frill, attributed to the School of Titian. 20 [J. Waldie?], A Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Pictures, Sculptures, Bronzes, &c. at Hendersyde Park, the Seat of John Waldie, Esq. (Edinburgh, 1835), hereafter cited as 1835 Catalogue. 21 1835 Catalogue, p. vi. 22 Ibid. 23 John Waldie’s travel diaries form part of the John Waldie Papers, Collection 169, Box 5, Journals 66--70. 24 [John Waldie?], A Catalogue of Pictures, Statues . . . in the Various Apartments at Hendersyde Park (Kelso, 1859), hereafter cited as 1859 Catalogue. John Waldie also published a Catalogue of the Library at Hendersyde Park (Kelso, 1863) as an accompaniment to the catalogue of works of art. This catalogue also contains some family history, pp. v-vii. 25 1859 Catalogue, p. iv. 26 1859 Catalogue, Guido Reni, Vision of Jacob, pp. 70--71; Raffaelle (scuola di) [sic], The Holy Family, p. 105. 27 1859 Catalogue, p. 6. Carlo, also known as Carletto (1567–1596), was the son (not nephew as the catalogue states in error) of Paolo Caliari (1528–1588), famously nicknamed Veronese. On Carletto’s biography, see D. Gisolfi, ‘Veronese’s training, methods, and shop practice’, in Paolo Veronese: a master and his workshop in Renaissance Venice, ed. V. Brilliant, F. Ilchman and D. Rosand (London 2012), p. 41. Carlo was trained from childhood in his father’s workshop, working alongside his uncle Benedetto and brother Gabriele (1568–1630/1), and he eventually took over the business when his father died, assisting in the completion several of his unfinished paintings. This reference to Veronese as an ‘uncle’ serves as a reminder that his nephew Luigi Benfatto (1551–1611), also known as Luigi Alvise dal Friso, was trained in his workshop. However, there is no evidence that John Waldie acquired this portrait in the belief that it was by Benfatto rather than Carlo Caliari. For Veronese’s workshop as a family concern, see F. Ilchman (ed.), Titian Tintoretto Veronese Rivals in Renaissance Venice (Farnham 2009), pp. 28, 68, 228. 28 John Waldie Papers, ucla, Los Angeles. Journal 69, 1 November 1836 to May 1837. Hereafter cited as Waldie Diary. 29 Waldie Diary, pp. 50--52. 30 Ibid., p. 45. See also 1859 Catalogue, Simone di Pesaro, Bacchus and Ariadne, p. 69. 31 Waldie Diary, p. 49. 32 Ibid., p. 54. 33 Ibid., p. 57. 34 Ibid., p. 58. 35 Ibid., p. 61. In the 1859 Catalogue: Tiepolo, Portrait of a Venetian Lady, p. 142; Simone di Pesaro, Bacchus and Ariadne, p. 69. We were unable to trace the view by Canaletto in the 1859 catalogue as the view quoted at p. 21 was said to have been purchased ‘from the collection of Signor Gherardi at Florence’ in 1828. 36 Waldie Diary, pp. 66--7. In the 1859 Catalogue: Caliari, p. 6; Marieschi, View of Venice, p. 21; the two paintings by Guardi are untraced. Paolo Veronese had one daughter and four sons. 37 ‘2 Beautiful Ghisolfi of ruins and figures for £2 each’, Waldie Diary, p. 71. The pictures are referred to in the 1859 Catalogue as ‘from the collection of Signor Giustiniani at Venice in 1836’. Waldie states, somehow untruthfully, that ‘both were obtained with much difficulty’, Waldie Diary, pp. 28--30. In 1927 the Ghisolfi pair sold for only 1 penny, see Christie’s sale, op. cit. (note 15), lot 28, p. 61. 38 ‘I walked to Mr. Holmes and found all my pictures safely stored in his first story in a large case. I got settled with the 2 persons from which I have bought them as Mr. Holmes paid them off. They will be sent off next week to London . . . at 8 went to drink tea with Mr and Mrs Holmes to settle about the picture. Luckily nobody was there and I spent near 2 hours with them very pleasantly’. Waldie Diary, p. 77. 39 I. Gaskell, ‘Tradesmen as scholars: interdependencies in the study and exchange of art’, in Art History and its Institutions. Foundations of a Discipline, ed. E. Mansfield (London, 2002), pp. 146--62. 40 See the many letters on the necessity of reducing the firm’s overdraft in August 1920 (nga, nga27/11/1/133, nga27/11/1/134); and a letter of 29 February 1924 in which is discussed Colin Agnew’s loss of £30,000 of capital and how the large debts are a source of strain for the firm, nga, nga27/23/7/6. Continuing financial problems are outlined in some 1928 letters from Charles Gerald Agnew to Walter Draper of Lloyd’s Bank, nga, nga27/11/1/304, nga27/11/1/305 and nga27/11/1/313. 41 On growth of prices in the 1920s, see G. Reitlinger, The Economics of Taste. The rise and fall of picture prices 1760–1960 (London, 1961), pp. 202--3. 42 Ibid., pp. 202--4. 43 A.C.R. Carter, ‘The art sales of 1927’, The Year’s Art (1928), pp. 288--9. 44 Stock book details for Picture Shipped to New York per ssLa Savoie: ‘Titian A Man with Hawk, cc. Duveen Brothers from the Simion Collection cost cc.mat [£30.12. 6] joint with Duveen – our half taken over by c.m.a. [Charles Morland Agnew] consular valuation ai.eee [£25,000] – frame old ke [£40]’, nga, nga27/11/1/274. 45 The term ‘sleeper’ within the art market was derived from sporting and film colloquialisms. Oxford English Dictionary: ‘1892 Outing Mar. 454/2 Williams won the high and low hurdles in record time . . . and Harmar a second in the mile, being beaten by Wells, a ‘sleeper’ from Amherst’. ‘1903 J. P. Paret Lawn Tennis iii. vi. p. 350, ‘Sleeper, a slang expression meaning a player who is much better than was thought’. 46 Reitlinger, op. cit. (note 41), p. 462. 47 For early Tintoretto auction sales see A. Graves, Art Sales (London 1917), vol. ii, pp. 208--9. The following list of prices noted in auction reports by The Times in the 1920s shows that Tintoretto was not strong on the auction market, also because of the unreliability of the attributions. The higher prices towards the end of the century also indicate the impact made on the marker by the new study of this artist, and by more reliable attributions: Baptism of Christ, attributed to Tintoretto sold for 150 guineas (£225), The Times, 12 November 1921; The Miracle of St Mark sold for 800 guineas (£840) to Colnaghi, The Times, 5 May 1922; Christ Curing the Paralytic bought by R. Langton Douglas for 580 guineas (£609) and Senator in Dark Dress Lined with Ermine bought by P. Colnaghi for 600 guineas (£630), The Times, 5 May 1923; Doge of Venice, attributed to Tintoretto, sold for 580 guineas (£609) and St Mark Preaching at Venice, sold for 580 guineas (£609), ‘The Sale Room’ The Times, 26 March 1927; Tintoretto, The Entombment of Christ, sold for 230 guineas (£241), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 23 November 1927; Diana and the Sleeping Endymion by Tintoretto was bought by Frank Sabin for 4,100 guineas (£4,305), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 9 March 1928; Tintoretto, Portrait of Andreas Vesalius bought for 1,300 guineas (£1,365) by R. Langton Douglas ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 9 June 1928; Virgin and Saints by Tintoretto £1,333 ‘Sale Of Nemes Art Collection’, The Times, 14 November 1928; Tintoretto Cornaro Family Group sold for 2,800 guineas (£2,940), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 26 July 1929. The Year’s Art reported two notable sales of Tintoretto in 1927: David and Goliath to Permain for 2,500 guineas (£2,625) and Gentleman with Beard at Window to Hopkins for 2,000 guineas (£2,100), both from the Holford collection. The Year’s Art (1927), pp. 302--3. Tintoretto, Member of Capello Family sold on 24 July 1929 at Sotheby’s for 8,000 guineas (£8,400) to Asscher; a Pieta’ at the Harborough sale was sold for 3,500 guineas (£3,675) to the Savile Gallery. 48 A. L. Lepschy, Tintoretto Observed. A documentary survey of critical reaction from the 16th to the 20th century (Ravenna, 1983), pp. 121--37, 140--49. 49 E. Bernard, Tintoretto, Greco, Magnasco, Manet (Paris, 1920), pp. 15--38, quoted by Lepschy, op. cit. (note 48), pp. 134--7. 50 D. von Hadeln, Zeichnungen des Giacomo Tintoretto (Berlin, 1922). It is important to note that Paul Cassirer, the publisher of Hadeln’s book, was himself an art dealer, so he too had some vested interest in the publication of the catalogue; Hadlen published articles on Tintoretto principally in the Burlington Magazine – see D. von Hadeln, ‘Some early works by Tintoretto i’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1922), 206--17; D. von Hadeln, ‘Early works by Tintoretto ii’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1922) 278--88; D. von Hadeln, ‘Originals and replicas from Tintoretto’s studio’, Burlington Magazine 43 (1923), pp. 286--95; D. von Hadeln, ‘A self-portrait by Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 44 (1924), 92--3; D. von Hadeln, ‘Some drawings by Tintoretto’ Burlington Magazine 44 (1924), 278--84. For biographical information, see his obituary in the Burlington Magazine 66 (1935), p. 299. 51 These dealers advertised portraits by Tintoretto for sale in the Burlington Magazine in the 1920s: A.L Nicholson (London), Portrait of a Woman, Burlington Magazine 62 (1923), p. xxiii; Max Rothschild (Sackville Gallery, London), Portrait of a Gentleman, Burlington Magazine 62 (1925), p. ii, fig. 4; Ehrich Galleries (New York), A Venetian Senator, Burlington Magazine 51 (1927), p. xii, fig. 4; A. S. Drey (Munich), A Venetian Senator, Burlington Magazine 53 (1928), s. p; Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York), Portrait of a Man in Armour, Burlington Magazine 55 (1929) p. xlvii, fig. 5. 52 This painting, ng4004, was presented by the National Art-Collections Fund on the occasion of the National Gallery’s centenary in 1924. See the acquisition file in the National Gallery, nga, ng14/46/1. It was extensively commented on in the press: see for instance ‘A Tintoretto for the nation’, The Times, 9 May 1924; ‘A masterpiece of painting’, The Times, 9 May 1924; ‘A Tintoretto for the nation’, The Times, 22 November 1924. N. Penny, National Gallery Catalogues, The Sixteenth Century Italian Paintings (London 2008), vol. ii, p. 184, discusses the acquisition through Agnew’s, as well as the portrait’s earlier provenance with the Italian art dealer Alessandro Contini (later known as Count Contini-Bonacossi). 53 The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York had already acquired two paintings ascribed to Tintoretto (The Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes and Two Brothers) in 1913. In 1921 it held two more on long-term loan (A Venetian Doge and The Historian Varchi), see the Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Index vol. iii, 1912--1921 (1921), p. 224. In 1923 the Detroit Museum of Fine Arts purchased a ceiling painting by Tintoretto, see ‘Report of the Arts Commission for the Year 1923’, Bulletin of the Detroit Institute of Arts of the City of Detroit 5 (1924), p. 27. The Boston Museum acquired several works by Tintoretto in the course of the 1920s: see P. Hendy, ‘Paintings by Tintoretto in Boston’, Burlington Magazine 62 (1933), pp. 128--35. In March 1927 the Cleveland Museum of Art acquired a Madonna and Child by Tintoretto: see ‘Accessions’, Bulletin of the Cleveland Museum of Art 14 (1927), p. 44. In early 1928 the City Art Museum in St. Louis purchased The Finding of Moses by Tintoretto: see J.B.M, ‘The Finding of Moses by Tintoretto’, Bulletin of the City Art Museum of St. Louis 13 (1928), p. 47. Museums in other countries succumbed to the lure of Tintoretto, notably the National Gallery of Victoria purchased a Portrait of a Doge by Tintoretto in 1927 from Knoedler for £14,000 (Knoedler had paid £3,500 for it). See the firm’s stock books online, Getty, record no. k-28060. Available online: [http://piprod.getty.edu/starweb/stockbooks/servlet.starweb?path=stockbooks/stockbooks.web, accessed November 2016]. See also T. Borenius, ‘A Tintoretto for Melbourne’, Apollo 5 (1927), pp. 216--17. 54 Colin Agnew to Anthony de Rothschild, 23 April 1927, nga, nga27/11/1/273. 55 For the October 1927 Agnew’s shipping records, see nga, nga27/11/1/280 (3 October), nga27/11/1/281 (7 October), nga27/11/1/282 (14 October) and nga27/11/1/284 (21 October). 56 D. von Hadeln, ‘Some paintings and drawings by Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 48 (1926), p. 120. In 1928 Hadeln published in the Burlington Magazine (52 (1928), pp. 191--3) a Portrait of a Lady by Paolo Veronese from the stock of Böhler. On Ringling, Hadeln and Böhler, see John Ringling: Dreamer, Builder, Collector, exh. cat., John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art (Sarasota, 1997), pp. 18--26, 35--77 (for Böhler) and pp. 34, 62--63 (for Hadeln). 57 In the period 1926–29, Agnew’s purchased from Borenius: a Portrait of John Milton by Dobson on 6 July 1926 (sb 10, no. 6590); a View of Venice by Canaletto on 2 November 1928 (sb 10, no. 6911); and a Portrait of Captain Lyon by J. Jackson on 16 May 1929 (sb 10, no. 7017). Hadeln sold to the firm a Portrait of a Man by Franciabigio on 11 May 1927 (sb 10, no. 6694); A Virgin and Child by Sellajo, a Saint Mark and a Saint John the Baptist by Palma il Vecchio on 12 September 1927 (sb 10, nos 6774–6776); a Portrait of Francesco Rovellino of Bergamo on 6 May 1929 (sb 10, no. 7012) and a Portrait of a Lady by Longhi on 30 September 1929 (sb 10, no. 7080). Charles Ricketts sold only one picture to Agnew’s in this period: a Caricature Group by Patch on 1 March 1929 (sb 10, no. 6986). 58 David C. Bolton is recorded as working for the firm between 1918 and 1928 in Agnew’s 1817–1967, op. cit. (note 13), p. 39. 59 nga, nga27/11/1/330. 60 nga, ng27/1/1/12, sb 10, no. 6334. 61 nga, ng7/1/1/12, sb 10, no. 6753. The British pound to US dollar exchange rate is from the site measuringworth.com, which gives the average of $4.86 for £1 in 1927, see https://www.measuringworth.com/exchangepound/, accessed January 2017. 62 Shipment of 20 October 1927 from London to New York: ‘Tintoretto 6753 Alessandro Farnese, from Lady Waldie Griffith cost marc [=£1,283] – no asking price consular value y,eee [=£5,000]. Frame ae [=£20] old. With the picture we have sent 20 copies of W. Ruizelli [Ruizetti?] brochure on the picture. Certified photo from Dr. Bode’. In this shipment only there were four male portraits by Tintoretto and others by Titian and Veronese. nga, nga27/11/1/284. 63 T. Borenius, ‘Portrait of a Young Nobleman by Tintoretto’; L. Venturi, ‘Portrait of Alessandro Farnese (1545–92) by Jacopo Robusti called Tintoretto (1512–1594)’; and C. Ricketts, ‘The Boy in White by Tintoretto’, all printed privately by Thomas Agnew and Co, London. Boston Museum of Fine Arts Archive. We are grateful to Frederick Ilchman, Chair, Art of Europe, and Mrs Russell W. Baker Curator of Paintings at the Boston Museum, for supplying us with copies of these articles from the museum’s records. Venturi also sold occasionally to Agnew’s: on 26 September 1927 a Madonna and Child in Landscape which was subsequently purchased by Viscount Rothermere (sb 10, no. 6764); on 13 May 1928 two Four Heads of Saints, attributed to Baronzio (sb 10, no. 6876–6877); on 12 October 1928 a Venus holding a Mirror by Palma il Vecchio (sb 10, no. 6897) and on 28 May 1929 a Portrait of a Young Man by Pontormo (sb 10, n. 7023). 64 Borenius, op. cit. (note 63), [4 pages, p. 3]. An end-note (p. 4) to this article records that the painting had been ‘Reproduced in the Illustrated Catalogue of the Later Venetian Exhibition at the Burlington Fine Arts Club, 1914, No. 34, Plate xxv (under a mistaken attribution to Titian)’. This information seems to imply that the portrait had been loaned to this exhibition in 1914, while still in the possession of the Waldie-Griffith family, but was then attributed to Titian (rather than by either Carlo Veronese or Tintoretto) by either the organizers of the Burlington Fine Arts Club exhibition or the Waldie-Griffith family. As Borenius was one of the organizers of this exhibition, it was probably there that he noticed the painting for the first time. Unfortunately the authors have not been able to locate this exhibition catalogue. 65 Venturi, op. cit. (note 63), [4 pages, p. 2]. Venturi’s article is dated: ‘London, October 10th, 1927’. 66 Ricketts, op. cit. (note 63), [3 pages, p. 3]. More recently, Roger Kuin has suggested that the Boston Museum portrait may be comparable to Veronese’s lost portrait of the young Englishman Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586). R. Kuin, ‘New light on the Veronese portrait of Sir Philip Sidney’, Sidney Newsletter and Journal 15 (1997), pp. 19--47, at pp. 35--6. Sidney sat for this portrait at Veronese’s workshop in February 1574 and, although it has been lost since the 1590s, it cannot be the painting now in the Boston Museum since Sidney’s portrait was recorded at Vienna in 1575, Antwerp in 1581 and then in the collections in England of Sidney’s uncle, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, until about 1590. See E. Goldring, ‘A portrait of Sir Philip Sidney by Veronese at Leicester House, London’, Burlington Magazine 154 (2012), pp. 548--54. Kuin’s suggestion is followed by A. Haynes, Walsingham. Elizabethan Spymaster & Statesman (Stroud, 2004), p. 81. 67 Hendy, op. cit. (note 53), pl. ii a, p. 130. Hendy was appointed curator of paintings for the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in 1930 and National Gallery director in 1946: see T. Cox, ‘Sir Philip Hendy’ [Obituary], Burlington Magazine 123 (1981), p. 33. 68 B. Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance (Oxford, 1932), p. 558; B. Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance . . . Venetian School (London 1957), vol. i, p.170, still lists this portrait as by [Jacopo] Tintoretto but its sitter is tentatively identified as: ‘Bust of? Alessandro Farnese’. 69 L. Venturi, Pitture Italiane in America (Milan, 1931), pl. ccciv. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of the History of Collections Oxford University Press

Provenance as a history of change: from Caliari in Scotland to Tintoretto in America: the commercial and connoisseurial trajectories of a Venetian portrait

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Abstract

Abstract The Boston Museum of Fine Arts owns a Portrait of a Young Man now attributed to Domenico Robusti, son of Jacopo Tintoretto. This article documents for the first time the painting’s earlier provenance and its later arrival on the London art market. The hitherto unexamined papers of John Waldie, a wealthy Scottish collector, record his acquisition of the portrait at Venice in 1836 as a work by Carlo Caliari, the son of Paolo Veronese. In 1927 the portrait was sold, still as Caliari, by Waldie’s descendants to London art dealers Agnew’s for £800. Following expert advice from Wilhelm von Bode, Tancred Borenius, Lionello Venturi and Charles Ricketts, Agnew’s reattributed it to Jacopo Tintoretto before selling it to the Boston Museum for $75,000 (about £15,000). A comparison of these two key moments shows how art trade and connoisseurship had a joint impact on the history of the painting. Provenance – the investigation of historical ownership and circulation of objects – is gaining increasing importance in art historical investigations.1 As Gail Feigenbaum and Inge Reist have noted, at its best the study of provenance expands beyond the realm of property transfers of works of art and interrogates ‘ideas and narratives about the origins and itineraries of objects’ by drawing attention to ‘the transformative power of ownership’.2 The relationship between owners and works of art, they argue, can ‘change irrevocably the way that works will be perceived and understood by future generations’.3 The study of provenance, thus, with its emphasis on the social life of objects stimulates an interdisciplinary conversation between art historians, anthropologists, sociologists and economic historians. It is also germane to histories of collecting. This article follows the lead offered by Feigenbaum and Reist in order to explore the critical and commercial trajectory of a Venetian portrait at two key moments of its historical ownership. The first occurred in the fourth decade of the nineteenth century, when it travelled from Venice to Kelso in the Scottish Borders and entered the collection of a wealthy amateur art collector and theatrical enthusiast, John Waldie. The second happened nearly one hundred years later, in the third decade of the twentieth century, when the painting arrived on the London art market as the property of art dealers ‘Tho.s Agnew and Sons’ (Agnew’s) and was sold to the Boston Museum of Fine Arts via Agnew’s New York branch. The portrait in question came to wide public attention first in December 1927, when the Boston Museum acquired a portrait of a young man, then attributed to Jacopo Robusti (1519–1594), known as Tintoretto (Fig. 1).4 This painting was deemed to represent the youthful Alessandro Farnese (1545–1592), Duke of Parma from 1586. To mark this acquisition a celebratory article, written by the Boston Museum’s Assistant Director, Alice Child Jenckes, was published in the institution’s own journal.5 Jenckes noted the portrait’s provenance: Fig. 1. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Young Man, attributed to Domenico Tintoretto (in 1836 attributed to Carletto Caliari and in 1927 to Jacopo Tintoretto), 1580–1585. Oil on canvas, 64.8 x 55.3 cm. Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Fig. 1. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Young Man, attributed to Domenico Tintoretto (in 1836 attributed to Carletto Caliari and in 1927 to Jacopo Tintoretto), 1580–1585. Oil on canvas, 64.8 x 55.3 cm. Boston Museum of Fine Arts. For more than a century the picture has been in a private collection in Scotland, whither it was brought from Italy by a direct ancestor of the family. It has never been called to the attention of the outside world, and its very seclusion has prevented European scholars from access to it.6 Over seventy years later the Boston Museum reattributed this painting to Domenico Robusti (1560–1635), son of Tintoretto, and discarded the identification of the sitter as Alessandro Farnese describing the work simply as Portrait of a Young Man. The known provenance of the portrait is currently traced as follows on the Museum’s website: Around 1830, possibly Sir Richard John Griffith (b.1784–d.1878), Hendersyde Park, Kelso, Borders, Scotland [see note 1]; by descent within the family to Sir Richard John Waldie Griffith (b. 1850), 3d Bart., and Lady Waldie Griffith, Hendersyde Park; 1927, sold by Lady Waldie Griffith to Agnew and Sons, London (stock no. 6753); 1927, sold by Agnew to the mfa. (Accession Date: December 29, 1927). Notes: [1] Letters from Colin Agnew of Agnew and Sons, London, to Edward J. Holmes of the mfa (December 6, 1927 and December 10, 1927, in mfa curatorial file) reveal that the painting had ‘been [at Hendersyde Park] for at least a century, having been brought there by an ancestor of the recent owner’ and ‘brought to the British Isles a hundred years ago’.7 Records in the Agnew’s archive, now held at the National Gallery in London, shed further light on this sale. A copy of a letter dated 29 December 1927, from an unidentified sender to the head of the firm Colin Agnew (1882–1975), refers to the purchase of the ‘Tintoretto Farnese Boy’ from Lady Waldie-Griffith.8 By late-1927 Agnew’s had confirmed an identification of the sitter as a youthful Alessandro Farnese and an attribution to Jacopo Tintoretto. However, when this painting was first entered in Agnew’s stock book it was attributed to ‘Cagliari’ with this name deleted and ‘Tintoretto’ added above (Fig. 2).9 ‘Cagliari’ or ‘Caliari’, of course, is the adopted family name of Paolo Veronese (1528–1588), a contemporary of Jacopo Tintoretto and his major rival in Venice.10 The stock book also contains an additional note: ‘Certified photo from Dr Bode and brochure from Borenius’, references to Wilhelm von Bode (1845–1929), the famous director of the Berlin museums and formidable art connoisseur, and Tancred Borenius (1885–1948), the Finnish art historian appointed in 1922 as the first professor of history of art at University College, London, and one of the founders of the art magazine Apollo in 1925.11 The stock book entry also indicates that Borenius, who had a broad knowledge of Venetian Renaissance painters, received a payment from Agnew’s for writing an essay on this painting.12 Colin Agnew, who had run the company’s Berlin gallery before the First World War, knew Bode and Borenius well and he had previously consulted them for advice on attributions.13 Fig. 2. View largeDownload slide Detail from the Agnew’s Stock Books: Stock Book 10, entry no. 6753, showing the change of attribution from ‘Cagliari’ to ‘Tintoretto’. London, National Gallery Archive. Fig. 2. View largeDownload slide Detail from the Agnew’s Stock Books: Stock Book 10, entry no. 6753, showing the change of attribution from ‘Cagliari’ to ‘Tintoretto’. London, National Gallery Archive. John Waldie’s 1836 purchase: a self-portrait by Carletto Caliari Newly found evidence has revealed more details on the provenance of the portrait. As noted above, the painting was sold to Agnew’s in 1927 by Lady Waldie-Griffith, née Alice Maud Pearson (d.1955). Alice was the third wife of Sir Richard Waldie-Griffith (1850–1933), who married her at Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia when aged seventy-six.14 Sir Richard had succeeded to the family’s baronetcy and its estates at Kelso on the death of his father in 1889. Much of the family’s considerable wealth was derived from lucrative mining properties in Bohemia (now part of the Czech Republic), although Sir Richard lost most of this fortune in unwise share dealing just before the First World War, hence the 1927 and 1928 dispersal of the collection at auction.15 As noted in the Boston Museum provenance, this painting had been inherited by Sir Richard from his grandfather Sir Richard John Griffith (1784–1878). However, as Colin Agnew’s letter to the Boston Museum also stated, it is necessary to go further back down this family line in order to identify the first purchaser of this portrait. As indicated by the double-barrelled name Waldie-Griffith, the family combined two distinct ancestral lines. George Waldie (d.1826) acquired the Hendersyde estate through the marriage of his father John to Jean, the eldest daughter and heiress of Charles Ormston of Hendersyde, an old Kelso family. George was an industrialist who enjoyed the profits of extensive mining interests in the Newcastle collieries, and the Hendersyde estate was inherited by his eldest son John Waldie (1781–1865). The Waldies were an artistic family. John’s younger sisters Jane Waldie, later known as Mrs Watts (1793–1826), and Charlotte Ann Waldie (1788–1859) were both authors and artists of talent.16 John, a lifelong bachelor, became an art collector (especially of Italian old master paintings), theatre critic and writer, compiling detailed records of his acquisitions of paintings and other works of art in numerous journals. At his death in 1865 the estate passed to the eldest son of John’s sister Maria Jane Waldie (1786–1865).17 She had married the distinguished Irish geologist and mining engineer Richard Griffith (1784–1878), who was created 1st Baronet in April 1858.18 Their son George (1820–89), 2nd Baronet, took the name Waldie-Griffith. George had a son, Sir Richard, whose wife Alice sold the painting to Agnew’s in 1927. The key figure, therefore, in the acquisition of this portrait for the Hendersyde estate is John Waldie.19 Waldie, still a figure unexplored by modern historians of collecting, amassed a large, if slightly haphazard, collection of works of art. Its 1835 catalogue already counted 265 pictures as well as sculpture, bronzes and manuscripts. The paintings were displayed throughout the rooms of the family mansion of Hendersyde Park (Fig. 3), and included principally works ascribed to old masters such as Nicolas Poussin, Agnolo Bronzino, Annibale Carracci, Guido Reni, Titian, Diego Velázquez, Meindert Hobbema and many other names typically favoured by early nineteenth-century collectors of Old Masters.20 The catalogue admitted with honesty that many pictures were attributed with little or no certainty. Nevertheless, it certified proudly their Italian provenance, as the pictures ‘were principally collected by Mr. Waldie, in London, or in Italy; and chiefly in Rome, Florence, Bologna, Milan, and Naples’.21 Provenance thus reinforced their credentials as originals: even if not quite belonging to those to whom they were ascribed, the paintings were ‘almost entirely the works, or of the Schools, of the ancient Masters’.22 No painting that can be identified with the the Boston Museum portrait is listed in this first catalogue. Fig. 3. View largeDownload slide Hendersyde Park, frontispiece of the 1859 Catalogue of the Waldie Collection. London, British Library. Fig. 3. View largeDownload slide Hendersyde Park, frontispiece of the 1859 Catalogue of the Waldie Collection. London, British Library. John Waldie, however, undertook another extensive period of travel in Europe and Asia which lasted almost two years (from August 1836 until June 1838), visiting France, Switzerland, Savoy, Italy, the Ionian Islands, Greece, Asia Minor, Turkey, Hungary and Austria before returning to London via France.23 Throughout these travels he continued to acquire works of art, especially when in Italy. In 1859 Waldie published a second catalogue of his art collection.24 This revised edition was necessitated by the increased quantity of works in his possession. As the preface stated, The lapse of 24 years since the First Edition of this Catalogue was printed, and the acquisition of several fine Pictures and Busts, especially since the year 1845, have made it necessary to make an entirely new Catalogue, as the arrangement of the former has unavoidably been changed, and a number of other articles have been added besides new Pictures, Busts, and Columns.25 The catalogue also witnessed an increased confidence regarding the importance of the collection. If the first edition was almost apologetic about its uneven quality, the collection was now presented proudly, stating that it included a ‘noble and most striking Picture’, the Vision of Jacob by Guido Reni, and a ‘superb gem’, a Holy Family belonging to the School of Raphael.26 The Waldie collection however, possibly on account of its lack of acknowledged masterpieces and its remote location, escaped the attention of art surveys such as those of Johann David Passavant (published in 1836) and Gustav Friedrich Waagen (1854) and has remained, until now, unknown to scholars. Nevertheless, it is likely that its catalogues conceal under now-discredited attributions many works currently held in museum collections worldwide, and this article sheds new light on one of them, which the 1859 catalogue listed thus: Carlo Cagliari: 14. Portrait of himself when very young. It has a vigour and brilliancy of color worthy of his uncle [sic] Paolo Veronese, of whom he was the best pupil. Obtained at Venice in 1836.27 The travel diary of John Waldie, confirms that the painting was purchased in Venice in 1836. During his stay there, which lasted from 14 until 30 November, Waldie saw a large number of pictures.28 He admired them in churches and in established public and private collections (as in the Palazzo Manfrin, of which he gives an extensive description), but also in the premises of gentlemen-dealers who wished to sell them.29 For instance, on the day of his arrival in Venice, Waldie met with an art dealer named Giustiniani, from whom he had purchased pictures during his previous visit to the city nine years earlier. Waldie was immediately charmed by ‘A fine Bacchus and Ariadne not very large and quite in the Guido style by Simone [Cantarini] di Pesaro’.30 Even if Waldie saw other dealers, such as ‘Signor Biasion’, at first he had no intention of buying anything, dismissing the pictures viewed as ‘none tempting’ and pitched ‘at ridiculous prices’.31 Waldie soon encountered and befriended a British banker, always referred to as ‘Mr. Holmes’, who invited Waldie at his home for dinner and evening parties, and also provided him with new contacts with picture dealers.32 On 19 November Waldie went to see one of these, ‘Signor Romano’, who had ‘a small collection for sale’.33 Waldie professed to like none of Romano’s pictures, ‘except a St. Mark’s place by Marieschi, a ½ length of Carlo Cagliari said to be by Paolo Veronese’ and a landscape ‘by Tiepolo by Cimaroli or Cimolara’.34 Waldie soon changed his mind about purchasing and on 21 November left his lodgings in the morning to acquire Cantarini’s Bacchus and Ariadne from Giustiniani, ‘along with a view said to be by Canaletti’ and ‘a small full length female portrait by Tiepolo’. Waldie makes no record of how much he paid for these works, but it must not have been a large sum, as he noted with glee that the Bacchus and Ariadne alone ‘was worth twice as much as I gave for the whole’.35 Waldie went to visit Romano again on 23 November and purchased ‘2 fine views’ by Guardi, ‘the pretty little landscape’ by Cimaroli, the Marieschi, and, most importantly for our narrative, ‘the fine portrait by Carlo Cagliari of himself or rather it is supposed to be done by the daughter of Paolo’.36 Waldie’s collecting can be interpreted as an integral part of his social activities in Italy. He was a voracious collector but not a ‘philologist’ connoisseur: he showed more interest in the subject of the pictures, their narrative content, style and design rather than in their fully documented pedigree and certainty of authorship. In fact, he did not mind that the landscape by Cimaroli was a version of a work by Tiepolo, that his Cantarini was painted ‘in the Guido style’ and was a smaller replica of a larger work in the Manfrin collection. He also seemed not to care that the portrait of Carletto Caliari, at first presented to him as by Paolo Veronese, was eventually sold to him as a ‘school’ work: a self-portrait by Carletto or even by Veronese’s daughter. Waldie often privileged quantity to quality, he also liked bargaining and was eager to purchase at low prices: in his diary he records his great pleasure at having purchased two works by Ghisolfi for only £2 each.37 The following Saturday, 29 November, the portrait was presented by Holmes to Waldie, already packed together with the other works he had purchased, and ready to be shipped to London the following week.38 We can now identify this picture, then tentatively attributed to Carletto Caliari, with the painting presently owned by the Boston Museum. The evidence is firm: there are no other comparable pictures listed in Waldie’s 1859 catalogue of his collections and neither have any sources been located to suggest that John Waldie’s heirs or any other member of their respective families, acquired the Boston Museum portrait at some later date. Of most significance is the evidence from Agnew’s stock book in which the painter was first entered as ‘Cagliari’ (see Fig. 2). Colin Agnew’s 1927 sale: Alessandro Farnese by Jacopo Tintoretto Why did Agnew’s reattribute the painting from Caliari to Tintoretto? Was it simply because a work by the hand of Jacopo Tintoretto was worth more than one by the son of Veronese? Financial considerations were certainly important, but they provide only a partial explanation of the story. In his 2006 essay ‘Tradesmen as Scholars’, Ivan Gaskell has reconstructed examples of relationships between dealers and scholars from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries to contend that the art trade is not moved exclusively by monetary concerns, and argued for ‘a total interdependency between market and scholarship’.39 The history of this painting, and its changed attribution in 1927, presents a nexus of scholarship and trade that supports Gaskell’s argument. It is, however, also a significant case-study in its own right which sheds light on the critical reception of Jacopo Tintoretto at the time. If, as Gaskell states, ‘each generation, by means of its own chosen scholarly means, defines for itself the Rembrandt oeuvre it deserves’, what does this example tell us about the significance of Tintoretto in the 1920s? Was it spurred on by commercial greed, critical re-examination, wider Zeitgeist or a combination of all three? In the mid-1920s Agnew’s was a firm if not in crisis then certainly in flux, as the art trade was changing rapidly and becoming an increasingly difficult and risky business. Letters in the Agnew’s archive demonstrate the firm’s need for an increasing overdraft and its necessity to generate liquidity quickly.40 The 1920s witnessed a dramatic rise in the prices of works of art (they were soon to crash in equally dramatic fashion in the 1930s).41 If the £70,000 paid by the National Gallery in London for Raphael’s Ansidei Madonna remained a price pinnacle for nearly twenty-five years, higher and higher prices were recorded in the 1920s. In 1926 Henry E. Huntington paid Duveen £176,000 for Gainsborough’s Blue Boy (Huntington Museum, San Marino); in 1929 the National Gallery in London acquired the Vendramin Family by Titian from the Duke of Northumberland for £122,000 and Andrew Mellon bought Raphael’s Large Cowper Madonna (Washington, National Gallery of Art) from Duveen for £172,800.42 At the beginning of 1929, summarizing the 1927 season, art commentator A.C.R. Carter in The Year’s Art marvelled at the richness of sales in that year, when 130 pictures sold for more than 1,400 guineas (£1,470), surpassing easily the record of the annus mirabilis 1919, when 100 pictures had sold for more than that sum.43 The rise in prices of works of art meant that dealers could command high commissions, but it also meant that the owners of the paintings too expected increasingly higher returns, especially when their works were certainly ascribed to well-known artists. For instance, in the same year as the Farnese Boy purchase, a painting by Titian, Man with a Falcon (Omaha Art Museum) was purchased by Agnew’s in joint account with Duveen Brothers for £33,000 in 1927.44 With increasing debts, large overheads and non-paying customers, profitable art trading depended on three conditions: the first, to be able to interpret signals from the market and identify the emerging artists whose value was ascending rapidly; the second, to find what in contemporary art market parlance are called ‘sleepers’ – artworks whose real value has been missed by their owners and by rival dealers because they have been misattributed; and, last but not least, to sell to the cash-rich American market.45 The Farnese Boy was to satisfy all three criteria. The first was met immediately: Agnew’s reattributed the portrait to Jacopo Tintoretto and identified its subject as Alessandro Farnese. As a Venetian portrait by a lesser master, it was only marginally desirable, but as work by Tintoretto it was much more so. In 1961 Gerard Reitlinger in his oft-cited study of prices of works of art, The Economics of Taste, lamented the low commercial lure of Tintoretto: Tintoretto never recovered from the basting he received in Reynolds’s discourses, and in the 1850s even the intensive propaganda of The Stones of Venice could not create a market for him. Or perhaps it would be more truthful to say that Tintoretto’s easel works had never been popular at any time. The distortions (half way to El Greco), the impure pigments, the oil-sketch character of most of the works, the difficulty of determining school pieces – all have contributed.46 Auction data gathered by Graves until 1913 support Reitlinger’s statement, and saleroom reports by The Times in the late 1910s and early 1920s also record low Tintoretto resale prices, which picked up only towards the end of the decade.47 But auction prices tell only one side of the story. In fact, Tintoretto was gaining increased importance in the first decades of the twentieth century. As Anna Laura Lepschy has pointed out, a new critical re-examination of Tintoretto as a ‘modern artist’ had been developing since the late 1800s and the 1920s were a particularly significant decade within his reassessment.48 In 1920 Emile Bernard had put Tintoretto in the company of Manet and Cézanne and praised his modernity, expressed in a ‘completely new intellectual art’, that showed ‘ease of conception’ and ‘perfect balance of composition’.49 To Lepschy’s observations we can add that, in parallel to this novel critical interpretation of Tintoretto, connoisseurs were examining Venetian painting with a renewed interest and closer attention in order to distinguish stylistically this master’s oeuvre. A new corpus of works by Tintoretto was being established. The research by German art historian Detlev von Hadeln (1878–1935) in the late 1910s and early 1920s was particularly significant.50 Hadeln studied the drawings of Tintoretto and applied a careful stylistic and technical analysis to ascribe work to this artist. Connoisseurship and criticism, however, were soon to be joined by commerce. In the course of the 1920s many London dealers advertised works by Tintoretto for sale, especially in the pages of the Burlington Magazine (Figs 4–5).51 His portraits were in particular demand, a preference perhaps also spurred on by Agnew’s sale of the Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini to the National Gallery (via the National Art-Collections Fund) in 1924 for £14,000 (Fig. 6).52 Owning paintings by the ‘modern’ Tintoretto was en vogue and several museums, especially American, purchased works ascribed to this master in the 1920s.53 Colin Agnew was well aware of this trend: in 1927 he wrote to Anthony de Rothschild stating how in his recent visit to the United States he had realized the extent to which ‘the interest in Titian and Tintoretto has greatly increased among collectors and museum directors there’.54 Records in the Agnew’s archive witness several shipments of Venetian paintings from London to New York; in October 1927 alone, five male portraits ascribed to Tintoretto (including the Farnese Boy) left Agnew’s London premises for their New York branch.55 Museum acquisitions often presented particularly intricate connections of scholarship and commerce. For example, Hadeln himself, who had been selected by the art collector John Ringling as one of the directors of his newly opened museum in Sarasota, had a preferential relationship with the Munich and Lucerne art dealer Julius Böhler and at least once he wrote about a work by Tintoretto in the dealer’s stock.56 Both Borenius and Hadeln occasionally sold to Agnew’s in the period 1925–29.57 Although these linkages were not necessarily dishonest, there existed factions (and frictions between them): some museums had preferred dealers whom they trusted more than others. Fig. 4. View largeDownload slide Notices of portraits ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto in the Burlington Magazine: Portrait of a Gentleman, for sale at Max Rothschild (London) in December 1925 and A Venetian Senator, for sale at the Ehrich Galleries (New York) in December 1927. Fig. 4. View largeDownload slide Notices of portraits ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto in the Burlington Magazine: Portrait of a Gentleman, for sale at Max Rothschild (London) in December 1925 and A Venetian Senator, for sale at the Ehrich Galleries (New York) in December 1927. Fig. 5. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Man in Armour, ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto, advertised in the Burlington Magazine of July 1929 by Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York). Fig. 5. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Man in Armour, ascribed to Jacopo Tintoretto, advertised in the Burlington Magazine of July 1929 by Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York). Fig. 6. View largeDownload slide Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini by Jacopo Tintoretto, about 1575–1580. Oil on canvas, 85.3 x 52.2 cm. London, National Gallery. Fig. 6. View largeDownload slide Portrait of Vincenzo Morosini by Jacopo Tintoretto, about 1575–1580. Oil on canvas, 85.3 x 52.2 cm. London, National Gallery. Was the Farnese Boy a profitable ‘sleeper’? The sale was negotiated by a certain ‘Mr Bolton’, perhaps an employee of the firm named David C. Bolton.58 Lady Waldie-Griffith was paid £800 for this painting, with the promise of an extra £200 if the painting was to sell quickly.59 This was not an insignificant sum at the time and it was consistent with prices of works that were considered of good quality but were attributed to lesser-known artists. For instance in October 1926 the National Gallery had purchased from Agnew’s a Portrait of a Man then attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta (now ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti) for £900 (Fig. 7).60 Yet, as a work by the emerging star Tintoretto the Farnese Boy was worth considerably more, and as such Agnew’s sold it to Boston for $75,000, c.£15,000.61 Fig. 7. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Priest ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti (formerly attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta), early 1730s. Oil on canvas, 99.7 x 78.1 cm. London, National Gallery. Fig. 7. View largeDownload slide Portrait of a Priest ascribed to Giacomo Ceruti (formerly attributed to Giovanni Battista Piazzetta), early 1730s. Oil on canvas, 99.7 x 78.1 cm. London, National Gallery. Even if we consider the high cost noted by Agnew’s in the shipment records of the painting – £1,283 – the sale of this portrait gave Agnew’s a profit margin of over £13,500.62 The Farnese Boy was, undoubtedly, a very profitable sleeper. It would, however, be rash to judge Agnew’s re-attribution to Tintoretto solely as a money-making enterprise: they did not undertake this change of authorship lightly. At the time of the purchase the firm commissioned and printed three short articles written by Borenius, Lionello Venturi (1885–1961) and Charles Ricketts (1866–1931) to evaluate the painting.63 All three writers confirmed the attribution of this painting to Jacopo Tintoretto and identified its sitter as the youthful Alessandro Farnese, although this was accepted with differing levels of confidence and conviction. Borenius endorsed fully the attribution to Tintoretto, stating that because of ‘its power of physiological interpretation’, and its quality ‘of brushwork, coloring and atmosphere’ the picture must be ‘classed amongst the finest achievements of the Venetian as portrait painter’; he was, however, more cautious in his identification of the sitter.64 Venturi, a wide-ranging art historian whose publications covered sixteenth- to twentieth-century art, held no doubts. He stated that the portrait was ‘one of the most synthetic, intense and brilliant that Tintoretto ever depicted’ and ‘there can be no doubt that the sitter was Alessandro Farnese’.65 In contrast, the art connoisseur and artist Ricketts accepted the attribution to Tintoretto but was rather more circumspect over the possible identity of the sitter. He also suggested that the portrait dated not from the mid-1560s but from ‘the later years of the fifties’.66 Of course, the fact that Ricketts, Borenius and Venturi sold pictures to Agnew’s complicates this narrative of scholarship. Yet some external evidence points to this nexus as not being an exclusively commercial venture. In fact, the attribution to Tintoretto of this portrait was maintained for a very long time and was independently accepted by scholars such as Boston Museum curator – and later National Gallery director – Philip Hendy (1900–1980), who had no known connections with Agnew’s.67 It was even upheld by Bernard Berenson, who had many times professed a particular dislike for this firm.68 The fact that Venturi published this portrait again in his Pitture Italiane in America of 1931 could also indicate that his attribution to Tintoretto was proposed in good faith.69 Besides, the recent re-attribution from Jacopo to Domenico Tintoretto by the Boston Museum can be considered as an operation of connoisseurial fine-tuning, from a particular artist to his close circle, that takes account of the new evidence that has emerged on both artists rather than a complete dismissal of Agnew’s opinion. Conclusion The two key moments in the history of the painting, which we have reconstructed here, illustrate a sea-change in attitudes towards collecting and trade. The painting’s role was transformed profoundly – from marker of identity, culture and wealth in the mansion of a Scottish family to a specimen of art history in an American museum. This case reinforces clearly Feigenbaum and Reist’s narrative of provenance as a history of change. Yet, paradoxically, this portrait’s shifting roles and attributions also contain returning elements. Throughout its life the painting had fulfilled a liminal function. First in its transitioning between cultures, from Venice to Scotland and from Scotland to Boston (via London and New York). Secondly, in its changing attributions, being included either just outside the orbit of an established artist, or within the oeuvre of an artist then considered problematic. In the nineteenth century it was considered as the work of Carletto Caliari, the son of Paolo Veronese – within the circle of a celebrated artist. One century later it was attributed to Jacopo Tintoretto, at a time when the painter still enjoyed a mixed reputation. More recently, when Tintoretto has reached a firmer position in the art-historical canon, the painting has been transferred to the oeuvre of his son, Domenico. In all of these cases it has been situated in close proximity of canonical artists, without becoming part of the canon itself. The painting’s liminality has travelled across time and space. Acknowledgements We wish to thank: Richard Wragg, Archivist at the National Gallery; Agnes Penot for her invaluable help in accessing Waldie’s diary; and Frederick Ilchman and Thomas Michie at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. We are also particularly grateful to: Roger Kuin, Elizabeth Goldring, Mary Ellen Lamb and Mark Westgarth. Thanks are also due to our anonymous reader for the Journal of the History of Collections who has provided perceptive and generous feedback. Notes and references 1 In February 2008 at the College Art Association Conference (caa) in Dallas, tx, Gail Feigenbaum of the Getty Research Institute and Inge Reist of the Frick Art Reference Library, led a session titled ‘Provenance: The Transformative Power’, which was then expanded into a book: G. Feigenbaum and I. Reist (eds), Provenance. An alternate history of art (Los Angeles, 2012). See also the special issue on provenance studies in Collections: A Journal for Museum and Archives Professionals 10 (2014). Another session was held at the February 2016 caa Conference in Washington, dc, entitled ‘Career Opportunities? Teaching Provenance Research within the Field of Art History’. Museums in the USA such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York hold curator posts that specialize in provenance, and the study of provenance research is currently offered as degree course in Germany (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, and Freie Universität, Berlin) and the United Kingdom (University of Glasgow). Of great importance is also the ‘Collecting and Provenance’ research strand at the Getty Center, Los Angeles [http://www.getty.edu/research/tools/provenance/, accessed November 2016]. 2 Feigenbaum and Reist, op. cit. (note 1), p. 2. 3 Ibid. 4 The painting was bought by the museum with funds provided by two of the museum’s donors, Henrietta Fitz (‘Mrs. W. Scott Fitz’) and Robert Treat Paine, 2nd; it is therefore recorded as their gift. See T. Jefferson Coolidge, ‘Report of the President’, Annual Report for the Year . . . (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) 54 (1929), pp. 11–16. Henrietta Fitz was the mother of the Boston Museum Fine Arts director Edward Jackson Holmes. See her portrait in the museum collection, available online [http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/mrs-w-scott-fitz-mother-of-edward-jackson-holmes-261009, accessed November 2016]. Robert Treat Paine 2nd (d. 1929) was the son of Boston philanthropist Robert Treat Paine (1835–1910). On 24 March 1961 a copy of the portrait was sold at Christie’s; illustrated in Burlington Magazine 103 (1961), p. xiv. 5 A.C.J. [A. Child Jenckes], ‘Portrait of Alessandro Farnese, by Tintoretto’, Bulletin of the Museum of Fine Arts 36 (1928), pp. 2–3. This issue of the Bulletin included a reproduction of the portrait as its front cover. Jenckes was appointed assistant to the director in February 1927, see ‘Notes’, Museum of Fine Arts Bulletin 25 (1927), p. 10. 6 Jenckes, op. cit. (note 5), p. 2. 7 The full catalogue entry of this painting is available online, on the Boston Museum of Fine Arts website: [http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/portrait-of-a-young-man-32299, accessed November 2016]. 8 National Gallery Archive (hereafter cited as nga), nga27/11/1/330. 9 nga, nga27/1/1/12 stock book 10 (hereafter cited as sb 10) stock no. 6753. 10 On the names assumed by Tintoretto and Veronese, see T. Nichols, Tintoretto: Tradition and Identity (London, 1999, 2015 edn), 17--19. 11 sb 10, n. 6753. On Borenius, see D. Farr, ‘Borenius, (Carl) Tancred (1885–1948)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/76085, accessed November 2016]. Much has been written about Bode, see T. W. Gaehtgens and B. Paul (eds), Wilhelm Bode, Mein Leben (Berlin, 1997), esp. vol. ii, ‘Kommentarband’; Metzler Kunsthistoriker Lexikon: zweihundert Porträts deutschsprachiger Autoren aus vier Jahrhunderten (Stuttgart, 2007), pp. 32--35; J. J. Sheehan, Museums in the German Art World: From the end of the Old Regime to the rise of Modernism (Oxford, 2000), pp. 142--3, 157--9. 12 sb 10, no. 6753. For examples of Borenius’s scholarship on Tintoretto, see ‘A seascape by Tintoretto’, Apollo 2 (1925), p. 249; ‘A great Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1932), pp. 99--104. 13 On the relationship between Colin Agnew and Bode, see [G. Agnew], Agnew’s 1817–1967 (London, 1968), p. 45. Borenius had already authenticated other paintings for Agnew’s: see for instance the photograph of a Portrait of a Gentleman identified by Borenius as by Bernardino Licinio, nga, nga27/32/1/40. 14 [Obituary], Western Australian, 27 July 1933, p. 13 [http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/waldie-griffith-sir-richard-13761, accessed November 2016]. Agnew’s had also purchased an 1828 Portrait of Lady Waldie by Robert Edmonstone from Lady Waldie-Griffith together with the Caliari/Tintoretto portrait, see sb 10, no. 6754, illustrated here in Fig. 2. 15 In March 1932 Richard Waldie-Griffith brought before the Central European Court an action against an individual called Petschek who had purchased the bulk of his Bohemian mining shares for £100,000, even though they were later valued at £5,000,000. Sir Richard’s third wife Alice represented him (since he was then aged about 82) but the court found against him: op. cit. [Obituary] (note 14), p. 13. See also National Records of Scotland, Edinburgh, Waldie-Griffith of Hendersyde Park, papers on coalmines in Bohemia, gb234/ gd1/378. It was widely recorded in various Australian newspapers (including Perth’s Daily News, 6 October 1933) that after his death on 26 July 1933 Waldie-Griffith’s estate was valued at only £1,495. Lady Waldie-Griffith continued to pursue the family’s Bohemian mining shares claim for some twenty years after Sir Richard’s death. The Argos, 7 November 1955 [http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/71778520, accessed November 2016]. The Waldie-Griffith collection was dispersed at auction at Christie’s on 22 December 1927 and at Sotheby’s on 27 June 1928; notably a Portrait of Mrs Griffith (née Bramston) by George Romney was sold for 5,200 guineas (£5,460). See ‘The Art Sales of 1927’, The Year’s Art (1928), p. 301. 16 On the Waldie sisters, see C. L. Taylor, ‘Eaton, Charlotte Anne (1788–1859)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/28448, accessed November 2016]. 17 F. Burwick, The Journal of John Waldie Theatre Commentaries 1798–1830, eScholarship, University of California, Los Angeles, ca, 2008, pp. 1--4, quoting a memoir of John Waldie by his godson Sir George Douglas, ‘Overstrain versus Ennui’, Weekly Scotsman, September 1927. Historic Environment Scotland, Hendersyde Park gdl00210 [http://portal.historicenvironment.scot/designation/gdl00210, accessed November 2016]. 18 On Sir Richard Griffith, see A.W. Skempton, A Biographical Dictionary of Civil Engineers in Great Britain and Ireland (London, 2002), p. 274. 19 The bulk of John Waldie’s personal papers and journals are now preserved in the University of California Los Angeles Library, Department of Special Collections (ucla Catalog Record id: 4233947). These comprise seven volumes of letters addressed to Waldie; seventy-four journal volumes, eleven volumes concerning his international travels derived from his journals; and one volume of passports (covering the period 1827–1837). [http://www.oac.cdlib.org/findaid/ark:/13030/tf2r29n94n/admin/, accessed November 2016]. See also Yale University Library, Osborn d331, for Waldie’s diary for the period 11 May 1801–23 March 1803 [http://orbexpress.library.yale.edu/vwebv/holdingsInfo?bibId=7041426, accessed November 2016]. Brief attention in paid to Waldie as a collector in P. B. Humfrey, T. Clifford, A. Weston-Lewis and M. Bury, The Age of Titian: Venetian Renaissance Art from Scottish Collections (Edinburgh, 2004) pp. 51, 419--20. The Boston portrait was then identified in error with Waldie’s Head of a Man with Lace Frill, attributed to the School of Titian. 20 [J. Waldie?], A Descriptive Catalogue of the Collection of Pictures, Sculptures, Bronzes, &c. at Hendersyde Park, the Seat of John Waldie, Esq. (Edinburgh, 1835), hereafter cited as 1835 Catalogue. 21 1835 Catalogue, p. vi. 22 Ibid. 23 John Waldie’s travel diaries form part of the John Waldie Papers, Collection 169, Box 5, Journals 66--70. 24 [John Waldie?], A Catalogue of Pictures, Statues . . . in the Various Apartments at Hendersyde Park (Kelso, 1859), hereafter cited as 1859 Catalogue. John Waldie also published a Catalogue of the Library at Hendersyde Park (Kelso, 1863) as an accompaniment to the catalogue of works of art. This catalogue also contains some family history, pp. v-vii. 25 1859 Catalogue, p. iv. 26 1859 Catalogue, Guido Reni, Vision of Jacob, pp. 70--71; Raffaelle (scuola di) [sic], The Holy Family, p. 105. 27 1859 Catalogue, p. 6. Carlo, also known as Carletto (1567–1596), was the son (not nephew as the catalogue states in error) of Paolo Caliari (1528–1588), famously nicknamed Veronese. On Carletto’s biography, see D. Gisolfi, ‘Veronese’s training, methods, and shop practice’, in Paolo Veronese: a master and his workshop in Renaissance Venice, ed. V. Brilliant, F. Ilchman and D. Rosand (London 2012), p. 41. Carlo was trained from childhood in his father’s workshop, working alongside his uncle Benedetto and brother Gabriele (1568–1630/1), and he eventually took over the business when his father died, assisting in the completion several of his unfinished paintings. This reference to Veronese as an ‘uncle’ serves as a reminder that his nephew Luigi Benfatto (1551–1611), also known as Luigi Alvise dal Friso, was trained in his workshop. However, there is no evidence that John Waldie acquired this portrait in the belief that it was by Benfatto rather than Carlo Caliari. For Veronese’s workshop as a family concern, see F. Ilchman (ed.), Titian Tintoretto Veronese Rivals in Renaissance Venice (Farnham 2009), pp. 28, 68, 228. 28 John Waldie Papers, ucla, Los Angeles. Journal 69, 1 November 1836 to May 1837. Hereafter cited as Waldie Diary. 29 Waldie Diary, pp. 50--52. 30 Ibid., p. 45. See also 1859 Catalogue, Simone di Pesaro, Bacchus and Ariadne, p. 69. 31 Waldie Diary, p. 49. 32 Ibid., p. 54. 33 Ibid., p. 57. 34 Ibid., p. 58. 35 Ibid., p. 61. In the 1859 Catalogue: Tiepolo, Portrait of a Venetian Lady, p. 142; Simone di Pesaro, Bacchus and Ariadne, p. 69. We were unable to trace the view by Canaletto in the 1859 catalogue as the view quoted at p. 21 was said to have been purchased ‘from the collection of Signor Gherardi at Florence’ in 1828. 36 Waldie Diary, pp. 66--7. In the 1859 Catalogue: Caliari, p. 6; Marieschi, View of Venice, p. 21; the two paintings by Guardi are untraced. Paolo Veronese had one daughter and four sons. 37 ‘2 Beautiful Ghisolfi of ruins and figures for £2 each’, Waldie Diary, p. 71. The pictures are referred to in the 1859 Catalogue as ‘from the collection of Signor Giustiniani at Venice in 1836’. Waldie states, somehow untruthfully, that ‘both were obtained with much difficulty’, Waldie Diary, pp. 28--30. In 1927 the Ghisolfi pair sold for only 1 penny, see Christie’s sale, op. cit. (note 15), lot 28, p. 61. 38 ‘I walked to Mr. Holmes and found all my pictures safely stored in his first story in a large case. I got settled with the 2 persons from which I have bought them as Mr. Holmes paid them off. They will be sent off next week to London . . . at 8 went to drink tea with Mr and Mrs Holmes to settle about the picture. Luckily nobody was there and I spent near 2 hours with them very pleasantly’. Waldie Diary, p. 77. 39 I. Gaskell, ‘Tradesmen as scholars: interdependencies in the study and exchange of art’, in Art History and its Institutions. Foundations of a Discipline, ed. E. Mansfield (London, 2002), pp. 146--62. 40 See the many letters on the necessity of reducing the firm’s overdraft in August 1920 (nga, nga27/11/1/133, nga27/11/1/134); and a letter of 29 February 1924 in which is discussed Colin Agnew’s loss of £30,000 of capital and how the large debts are a source of strain for the firm, nga, nga27/23/7/6. Continuing financial problems are outlined in some 1928 letters from Charles Gerald Agnew to Walter Draper of Lloyd’s Bank, nga, nga27/11/1/304, nga27/11/1/305 and nga27/11/1/313. 41 On growth of prices in the 1920s, see G. Reitlinger, The Economics of Taste. The rise and fall of picture prices 1760–1960 (London, 1961), pp. 202--3. 42 Ibid., pp. 202--4. 43 A.C.R. Carter, ‘The art sales of 1927’, The Year’s Art (1928), pp. 288--9. 44 Stock book details for Picture Shipped to New York per ssLa Savoie: ‘Titian A Man with Hawk, cc. Duveen Brothers from the Simion Collection cost cc.mat [£30.12. 6] joint with Duveen – our half taken over by c.m.a. [Charles Morland Agnew] consular valuation ai.eee [£25,000] – frame old ke [£40]’, nga, nga27/11/1/274. 45 The term ‘sleeper’ within the art market was derived from sporting and film colloquialisms. Oxford English Dictionary: ‘1892 Outing Mar. 454/2 Williams won the high and low hurdles in record time . . . and Harmar a second in the mile, being beaten by Wells, a ‘sleeper’ from Amherst’. ‘1903 J. P. Paret Lawn Tennis iii. vi. p. 350, ‘Sleeper, a slang expression meaning a player who is much better than was thought’. 46 Reitlinger, op. cit. (note 41), p. 462. 47 For early Tintoretto auction sales see A. Graves, Art Sales (London 1917), vol. ii, pp. 208--9. The following list of prices noted in auction reports by The Times in the 1920s shows that Tintoretto was not strong on the auction market, also because of the unreliability of the attributions. The higher prices towards the end of the century also indicate the impact made on the marker by the new study of this artist, and by more reliable attributions: Baptism of Christ, attributed to Tintoretto sold for 150 guineas (£225), The Times, 12 November 1921; The Miracle of St Mark sold for 800 guineas (£840) to Colnaghi, The Times, 5 May 1922; Christ Curing the Paralytic bought by R. Langton Douglas for 580 guineas (£609) and Senator in Dark Dress Lined with Ermine bought by P. Colnaghi for 600 guineas (£630), The Times, 5 May 1923; Doge of Venice, attributed to Tintoretto, sold for 580 guineas (£609) and St Mark Preaching at Venice, sold for 580 guineas (£609), ‘The Sale Room’ The Times, 26 March 1927; Tintoretto, The Entombment of Christ, sold for 230 guineas (£241), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 23 November 1927; Diana and the Sleeping Endymion by Tintoretto was bought by Frank Sabin for 4,100 guineas (£4,305), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 9 March 1928; Tintoretto, Portrait of Andreas Vesalius bought for 1,300 guineas (£1,365) by R. Langton Douglas ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 9 June 1928; Virgin and Saints by Tintoretto £1,333 ‘Sale Of Nemes Art Collection’, The Times, 14 November 1928; Tintoretto Cornaro Family Group sold for 2,800 guineas (£2,940), ‘The Sale Room’, The Times, 26 July 1929. The Year’s Art reported two notable sales of Tintoretto in 1927: David and Goliath to Permain for 2,500 guineas (£2,625) and Gentleman with Beard at Window to Hopkins for 2,000 guineas (£2,100), both from the Holford collection. The Year’s Art (1927), pp. 302--3. Tintoretto, Member of Capello Family sold on 24 July 1929 at Sotheby’s for 8,000 guineas (£8,400) to Asscher; a Pieta’ at the Harborough sale was sold for 3,500 guineas (£3,675) to the Savile Gallery. 48 A. L. Lepschy, Tintoretto Observed. A documentary survey of critical reaction from the 16th to the 20th century (Ravenna, 1983), pp. 121--37, 140--49. 49 E. Bernard, Tintoretto, Greco, Magnasco, Manet (Paris, 1920), pp. 15--38, quoted by Lepschy, op. cit. (note 48), pp. 134--7. 50 D. von Hadeln, Zeichnungen des Giacomo Tintoretto (Berlin, 1922). It is important to note that Paul Cassirer, the publisher of Hadeln’s book, was himself an art dealer, so he too had some vested interest in the publication of the catalogue; Hadlen published articles on Tintoretto principally in the Burlington Magazine – see D. von Hadeln, ‘Some early works by Tintoretto i’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1922), 206--17; D. von Hadeln, ‘Early works by Tintoretto ii’, Burlington Magazine 61 (1922) 278--88; D. von Hadeln, ‘Originals and replicas from Tintoretto’s studio’, Burlington Magazine 43 (1923), pp. 286--95; D. von Hadeln, ‘A self-portrait by Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 44 (1924), 92--3; D. von Hadeln, ‘Some drawings by Tintoretto’ Burlington Magazine 44 (1924), 278--84. For biographical information, see his obituary in the Burlington Magazine 66 (1935), p. 299. 51 These dealers advertised portraits by Tintoretto for sale in the Burlington Magazine in the 1920s: A.L Nicholson (London), Portrait of a Woman, Burlington Magazine 62 (1923), p. xxiii; Max Rothschild (Sackville Gallery, London), Portrait of a Gentleman, Burlington Magazine 62 (1925), p. ii, fig. 4; Ehrich Galleries (New York), A Venetian Senator, Burlington Magazine 51 (1927), p. xii, fig. 4; A. S. Drey (Munich), A Venetian Senator, Burlington Magazine 53 (1928), s. p; Agnew’s (London, Manchester and New York), Portrait of a Man in Armour, Burlington Magazine 55 (1929) p. xlvii, fig. 5. 52 This painting, ng4004, was presented by the National Art-Collections Fund on the occasion of the National Gallery’s centenary in 1924. See the acquisition file in the National Gallery, nga, ng14/46/1. It was extensively commented on in the press: see for instance ‘A Tintoretto for the nation’, The Times, 9 May 1924; ‘A masterpiece of painting’, The Times, 9 May 1924; ‘A Tintoretto for the nation’, The Times, 22 November 1924. N. Penny, National Gallery Catalogues, The Sixteenth Century Italian Paintings (London 2008), vol. ii, p. 184, discusses the acquisition through Agnew’s, as well as the portrait’s earlier provenance with the Italian art dealer Alessandro Contini (later known as Count Contini-Bonacossi). 53 The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York had already acquired two paintings ascribed to Tintoretto (The Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes and Two Brothers) in 1913. In 1921 it held two more on long-term loan (A Venetian Doge and The Historian Varchi), see the Annual Report of the Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Index vol. iii, 1912--1921 (1921), p. 224. In 1923 the Detroit Museum of Fine Arts purchased a ceiling painting by Tintoretto, see ‘Report of the Arts Commission for the Year 1923’, Bulletin of the Detroit Institute of Arts of the City of Detroit 5 (1924), p. 27. The Boston Museum acquired several works by Tintoretto in the course of the 1920s: see P. Hendy, ‘Paintings by Tintoretto in Boston’, Burlington Magazine 62 (1933), pp. 128--35. In March 1927 the Cleveland Museum of Art acquired a Madonna and Child by Tintoretto: see ‘Accessions’, Bulletin of the Cleveland Museum of Art 14 (1927), p. 44. In early 1928 the City Art Museum in St. Louis purchased The Finding of Moses by Tintoretto: see J.B.M, ‘The Finding of Moses by Tintoretto’, Bulletin of the City Art Museum of St. Louis 13 (1928), p. 47. Museums in other countries succumbed to the lure of Tintoretto, notably the National Gallery of Victoria purchased a Portrait of a Doge by Tintoretto in 1927 from Knoedler for £14,000 (Knoedler had paid £3,500 for it). See the firm’s stock books online, Getty, record no. k-28060. Available online: [http://piprod.getty.edu/starweb/stockbooks/servlet.starweb?path=stockbooks/stockbooks.web, accessed November 2016]. See also T. Borenius, ‘A Tintoretto for Melbourne’, Apollo 5 (1927), pp. 216--17. 54 Colin Agnew to Anthony de Rothschild, 23 April 1927, nga, nga27/11/1/273. 55 For the October 1927 Agnew’s shipping records, see nga, nga27/11/1/280 (3 October), nga27/11/1/281 (7 October), nga27/11/1/282 (14 October) and nga27/11/1/284 (21 October). 56 D. von Hadeln, ‘Some paintings and drawings by Tintoretto’, Burlington Magazine 48 (1926), p. 120. In 1928 Hadeln published in the Burlington Magazine (52 (1928), pp. 191--3) a Portrait of a Lady by Paolo Veronese from the stock of Böhler. On Ringling, Hadeln and Böhler, see John Ringling: Dreamer, Builder, Collector, exh. cat., John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art (Sarasota, 1997), pp. 18--26, 35--77 (for Böhler) and pp. 34, 62--63 (for Hadeln). 57 In the period 1926–29, Agnew’s purchased from Borenius: a Portrait of John Milton by Dobson on 6 July 1926 (sb 10, no. 6590); a View of Venice by Canaletto on 2 November 1928 (sb 10, no. 6911); and a Portrait of Captain Lyon by J. Jackson on 16 May 1929 (sb 10, no. 7017). Hadeln sold to the firm a Portrait of a Man by Franciabigio on 11 May 1927 (sb 10, no. 6694); A Virgin and Child by Sellajo, a Saint Mark and a Saint John the Baptist by Palma il Vecchio on 12 September 1927 (sb 10, nos 6774–6776); a Portrait of Francesco Rovellino of Bergamo on 6 May 1929 (sb 10, no. 7012) and a Portrait of a Lady by Longhi on 30 September 1929 (sb 10, no. 7080). Charles Ricketts sold only one picture to Agnew’s in this period: a Caricature Group by Patch on 1 March 1929 (sb 10, no. 6986). 58 David C. Bolton is recorded as working for the firm between 1918 and 1928 in Agnew’s 1817–1967, op. cit. (note 13), p. 39. 59 nga, nga27/11/1/330. 60 nga, ng27/1/1/12, sb 10, no. 6334. 61 nga, ng7/1/1/12, sb 10, no. 6753. The British pound to US dollar exchange rate is from the site measuringworth.com, which gives the average of $4.86 for £1 in 1927, see https://www.measuringworth.com/exchangepound/, accessed January 2017. 62 Shipment of 20 October 1927 from London to New York: ‘Tintoretto 6753 Alessandro Farnese, from Lady Waldie Griffith cost marc [=£1,283] – no asking price consular value y,eee [=£5,000]. Frame ae [=£20] old. With the picture we have sent 20 copies of W. Ruizelli [Ruizetti?] brochure on the picture. Certified photo from Dr. Bode’. In this shipment only there were four male portraits by Tintoretto and others by Titian and Veronese. nga, nga27/11/1/284. 63 T. Borenius, ‘Portrait of a Young Nobleman by Tintoretto’; L. Venturi, ‘Portrait of Alessandro Farnese (1545–92) by Jacopo Robusti called Tintoretto (1512–1594)’; and C. Ricketts, ‘The Boy in White by Tintoretto’, all printed privately by Thomas Agnew and Co, London. Boston Museum of Fine Arts Archive. We are grateful to Frederick Ilchman, Chair, Art of Europe, and Mrs Russell W. Baker Curator of Paintings at the Boston Museum, for supplying us with copies of these articles from the museum’s records. Venturi also sold occasionally to Agnew’s: on 26 September 1927 a Madonna and Child in Landscape which was subsequently purchased by Viscount Rothermere (sb 10, no. 6764); on 13 May 1928 two Four Heads of Saints, attributed to Baronzio (sb 10, no. 6876–6877); on 12 October 1928 a Venus holding a Mirror by Palma il Vecchio (sb 10, no. 6897) and on 28 May 1929 a Portrait of a Young Man by Pontormo (sb 10, n. 7023). 64 Borenius, op. cit. (note 63), [4 pages, p. 3]. An end-note (p. 4) to this article records that the painting had been ‘Reproduced in the Illustrated Catalogue of the Later Venetian Exhibition at the Burlington Fine Arts Club, 1914, No. 34, Plate xxv (under a mistaken attribution to Titian)’. This information seems to imply that the portrait had been loaned to this exhibition in 1914, while still in the possession of the Waldie-Griffith family, but was then attributed to Titian (rather than by either Carlo Veronese or Tintoretto) by either the organizers of the Burlington Fine Arts Club exhibition or the Waldie-Griffith family. As Borenius was one of the organizers of this exhibition, it was probably there that he noticed the painting for the first time. Unfortunately the authors have not been able to locate this exhibition catalogue. 65 Venturi, op. cit. (note 63), [4 pages, p. 2]. Venturi’s article is dated: ‘London, October 10th, 1927’. 66 Ricketts, op. cit. (note 63), [3 pages, p. 3]. More recently, Roger Kuin has suggested that the Boston Museum portrait may be comparable to Veronese’s lost portrait of the young Englishman Sir Philip Sidney (1554–1586). R. Kuin, ‘New light on the Veronese portrait of Sir Philip Sidney’, Sidney Newsletter and Journal 15 (1997), pp. 19--47, at pp. 35--6. Sidney sat for this portrait at Veronese’s workshop in February 1574 and, although it has been lost since the 1590s, it cannot be the painting now in the Boston Museum since Sidney’s portrait was recorded at Vienna in 1575, Antwerp in 1581 and then in the collections in England of Sidney’s uncle, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, until about 1590. See E. Goldring, ‘A portrait of Sir Philip Sidney by Veronese at Leicester House, London’, Burlington Magazine 154 (2012), pp. 548--54. Kuin’s suggestion is followed by A. Haynes, Walsingham. Elizabethan Spymaster & Statesman (Stroud, 2004), p. 81. 67 Hendy, op. cit. (note 53), pl. ii a, p. 130. Hendy was appointed curator of paintings for the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston in 1930 and National Gallery director in 1946: see T. Cox, ‘Sir Philip Hendy’ [Obituary], Burlington Magazine 123 (1981), p. 33. 68 B. Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance (Oxford, 1932), p. 558; B. Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance . . . Venetian School (London 1957), vol. i, p.170, still lists this portrait as by [Jacopo] Tintoretto but its sitter is tentatively identified as: ‘Bust of? Alessandro Farnese’. 69 L. Venturi, Pitture Italiane in America (Milan, 1931), pl. ccciv. © The Author(s) 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

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Published: Mar 1, 2018

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