Rediscovery of a still-life signed by Francesco Bona

Francesco Bona (work at Naples at the end
of the XVII century
and at the beginning of the XVIII century)
Still-life with Thistles, Lemons
and Roses in a Vase

Oil on canvas - 74 x 100 cm
Paris, Galerie Mendes
Photo : Galerie Mendes

28/01/09 – Discovery – Paris, Art market – The Mendes Gallery in Paris is presenting a selection of Italian still-lifes, mostly from the 17th century, until 21 February 2009. Among them, art historians will be sure to notice a Still-life with Thistles, Lemons and Roses in a Vase, signed by the Neapolitan painter, Francesco Bona. As Claudia Salvi, who wrote the entry, points out, this is an important work as it is currently the only acknowledged one by the artist. Two paintings signed by him were included in the catalogue for the exhibition at the Lorenzelli Gallery in Bergamo in 1968 but their whereabouts are unknown today.

The artist was perhaps a student of Giovan Battista Ruoppolo (1629-1693). In any case, this canvas fits well into the context of Neapolitan still-lifes of that time and on which a remarkable exhibition had taken place at the Canesso Gallery in 2006 (see article). The discovery and publication of this unicum, thus now enabling the reattribution of certain works to Francesco Bona, shows once again how art dealers can sometimes play an important role in art history.

Galerie Mendes, 36 rue de Penthièvre, 75008 Paris, 01 42 89 16 71 Internet website

Version française

Didier Rykner, mercredi 28 janvier 2009

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