Art collectors: stories of yesterday and today

Who would like to investigate the emotions, drives and conflicts that enliven art collectors will be able to pleasantly enjoy a very refined reading of the past and a series of interesting narrations-interviews to who loves collecting antiques today.

Collectors of the past

Let’s start with a true story of the past. In The violin of Faenza, Champfleury the history of the finding and the run to the ownership of a majolica violin; Faenza stays for faïence in the original title Le violon de faïence. Jules François Félix Husson, real name of Champleury, was a great lover and knower of ceramics; he was also the author of the Histoire des faïences patriotiques sous le Révolution in 1866. On the base of his knowledge, inspired by a true story, he narrates with peculiar pathos the soulof who knows, loves and desires with burning passion the object of desire, in this case a majolica violin. It is known that majolica violins are rare: today, seven stored in museums are known, and the finding of one of the few exemplars caused the competition of art collectors to be able to own it.

For those who would like to know better the story of Champleury, they will be able to read the book by visiting Normandy and the Musée de la Céramique in Rouen; here, you can admire a majolica violin of Delft, a copy from the classical model of the Amati school, decorated in light-blue and blue with putti, shells and a musical trophy at the centre.

Contemporary art collectors

Carrying on the investigation on the soul of art collectors of today it will be possible to discover something in the interviews of the recent book of Casimiro Porro: Through the ways of art. Memory and considerations of a protagonist, between market and institutions. The text talks about the Italian art market through the experiences and the memories of one of the most authoritative protagonists of the last 50 years. Starting from personal experiences and stories on experts, artists and cultural environments, Porro takes us to the interviews with fine collectors such as Mario Scaglia, Guido Rossi, Giuseppe Iannaccone and Francesco Micheli. Each one of them interprets his own passion from different perspectives and motivations but with the same spirit of that who surrenders to art the “Credo quia absurdum est – I believe because it is absurd”.

Champfleury, The violin of Faenza, Sellerio, 1990

C. Porro, P. Borghini, Through the ways of art. Memory and considerations of a protagonist, between market and institutions, Skira, 2019

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