One of the most beautiful works of the Italian Trecento: the life of Christ in wonderful pictures

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Florence (Italy) — 1320-1330

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Florence (Italy) — 1320-1330

  1. Pacino di Bonaguida’s text on the life of Christ is among the most significant works of the Italian Trecento

  2. The scenes play out in front of or in architectural spaces, whereby perspective found its first implementation

  3. The manuscript from ca. 1320 is completely without text and relies solely on the colorful, gilded initials

Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane

After the Last Supper, Jesus went off to pray alone knowing that his fate was drawing near. “And He was withdrawn from them about a stone’s throw, and He knelt down and prayed, saying, ‘Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.’ Then an angel appeared to Him from heaven, strengthening Him. And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” (Matt. 22:41-44)

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Alternative Titles:
  • Pacino de Bonaguida - Scenes from the Life of Christ and the Life of the Blessed Gerard of Villamagna
  • Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
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  1. Short Description
  2. Codicology

Short Description

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book is counted among the most significant works of Italian Trecento book art. The Florentine artist used the developments of Trecento painting in Italy, represented in particular by the monumental painting of Giotto, in the more intimate medium of illumination. In luminously bright miniatures of great intensity, he visualized the life of Jesus Christ in his manuscript from ca. 1320.

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book is counted among the most significant works of Italian Trecento book art. The Florentine artist used the developments of Trecento painting in Italy, represented in particular by the monumental painting of Giotto, in the more intimate medium of illumination. In luminously bright miniatures of great intensity, he visualized the life of Jesus Christ in his manuscript from ca. 1320.

The Power of Images

The first thing to catch one’s eye is probably the intensive blue of the background. This luminous color is a dominant feature of the book’s miniatures. Always surrounded by red-blue frames, biblical scenes play out against the blue background. The total of 38 full-page miniatures begins with a depiction of King David with a scroll in his hand. Following thereafter are 32 scene from the life of Christ, from the Annunciation through the birth and childhood of Jesus up to the Passion and Ascension. The last five picture pages deal with the life of St. Gerardo da Villamagna, a 13th century crusader and Franciscan monk, who lived as a hermit at the end of his life.

The Great Art of Trecento in Small Format

The scenes play out in front of or in architectural spaces, whereby perspective found its first implementation, or in nature before stylized trees and green hills. The reduction of the figures depicted to only the persons taking part in events is admirable. All of them are dressed in in beautiful arrangements of folds and are portrayed with forceful gestures that elucidate the events. Pacino de Bonaguida consequently conveyed the developments in the painting of the Trecento in Italy with all the innovations of illumination. Especially worthy of mention is the implementation of perspective for the first time, Trecento’s new spatial concept of imagery, in illumination. He accomplished that however, in spite of everything, not by directly referring to examples, but by implementing his own pictorial ideas. By breaking up the large depictions of panel and mural painting into several smaller scenes in his miniature painting and making them more easily comprehensible, he likewise created a new method of narrative development.

The Work of a Pioneering Artist

With his book, Pacino de Bonaguida made a manuscript completely without text, which depended solely on the expressiveness of this pictorial representations. Across 19 pages, he assembled emphatic depictions from the life of Christ in powerful temperas and with the application of valuable gold leaf. Pacino de Bonaguida is the first illuminator of Florence, who is known by name. His name is associated today above all with his picture book and or the Tree of Life in the Florentine Academy, but also the only panel painting with his signature, the so-called Chiarito-Tabernacle from the 1340’s, which is housed today in the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. The illuminated manuscript presented here probably originates from ca. 1320 and is part of the collection of the Morgan Library in New York today.

Codicology

Alternative Titles
Pacino de Bonaguida - Scenes from the Life of Christ and the Life of the Blessed Gerard of Villamagna
Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder
Size / Format
40 pages / 30.9 x 22.5 cm
Date
1320-1330
Style
Gothic
Illustrations
38 miniatures: 32 scenes from the Life of Christ, two Old Testament scenes and four miniatures with scenes of the life of Blessed Gherardo of Villamagna
Content
32 scenes from the Life of Christ, two Old Testament scenes and four miniatures with scenes of the life of Blessed Gerard of Villamagna
Artist / School
Previous Owners
Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder

Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book

Holy Women at the Sepulcher

In front of an opulent blue background, three of Christ’s female disciples have come to pay respect at his sepulcher, one holding a jar of ointment in her hand. There they find an angel with glowing red skin sitting on the ledge of the empty crypt and holding a scepter in their left hand, right hand raised toward the mourners in an act of proclaiming the Resurrection.

This miniature is a wonderful example of the manuscript’s masterful fall of folds, forceful gestures, and highly stylized backgrounds. The scene makes use of a wonderful palette of primary colors, with soothing shades of green and blue contrasting with a radiant red bordering on orange. Finely polished golden halos round out this wonderful work of the Trecento.

1 available facsimile edition(s) of „Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book“

Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
Pacino di Bonaguida’s Picture Book – MS M.643 – Morgan Library & Museum (New York, USA)
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Pacino de Bonaguidas Buch der Bilder

1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size)
Limited Edition
900 copies
Binding
The original leaves are preserved disbound. The facsimile edition is bound in red leather witch is richly decorated with gold tooling.
Commentary
1 volume by Christine Sciacca
Languages: English, German
Regular price without login (like new)2,980 €
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