The Dutch University Institute for Art History in Florence has published an online database: Corpus of Works of Art Offered at Auction in Italy, 1800-1900. This online research tool includes descriptions of more than 60,000 works of art offered at auction in the Italian Peninsula in the 19th century. The coverage of the database is both comprehensive and unique. Worldwide, 294 auction catalogues have been identified and analysed, many of which are not mentioned in the Répertoire des catalogues de ventes publiques by Frits Lugt.
Scope of Works Covered
The Corpus contains descriptions of Western paintings, bronze and marble sculptures, drawings and prints from the late Middle Ages to the modern period. In addition tapestries, wooden sculptures, and Antique and Byzantine sculptures may be included if made by known masters or if illustrated in the original auction catalogs.
Copies of sales catalogs often include handwritten annotations providing information about the sale results, including the buyer and sale price. This information may come from the auctioneer or from a collector who attended the sale. Since each copy of an auction catalog may have different annotations, hammer prices and buyers’ names are mostly mentioned with specific references to the catalogs we have consulted.