MASTER OF THE KRAINBURG ALTARPIECE | The Massacre of the Innocents
MASTER OF THE KRAINBURG ALTARPIECE | The Massacre of the Innocents
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Property from an English Private Collection

MASTER OF THE KRAINBURG ALTARPIECE | The Massacre of the Innocents

Estimate: 15,000 - 20,000 GBP

Property from an English Private Collection

MASTER OF THE KRAINBURG ALTARPIECE | The Massacre of the Innocents

Estimate: 15,000 - 20,000 GBP

Lot Sold:20,000GBP

Lot Details

Description

Property from an English Private Collection

MASTER OF THE KRAINBURG ALTARPIECE

active in Styria, Austria at the end of the 15th century

The Massacre of the Innocents


oil on panel

83.2 x 84.3 cm.; 32¾ x 33¼ in.

Condition Report

The panel is cradled, flat and stable. The paint surface is slightly dirty and the varnish is discoloured. There are a number of vertical splits and joins with associated retouching running the height of the panel: two to the right of Herod; another to the left of his head and through his body; two in the centre of the panel through the female figure in red; and another couple through the armoured soldier. Other visible retouchings are found through the foreground beneath Herod, and in the figures of the babies lower left and the central baby. Inspection under ultraviolet light confirms all of this and reveals strengthening in the red embroidery of Herod's robe, as well as further scattered retouchings in his face, around the legs of the figures on the left, and scattered in the red robe of the central figure.There is also some retouching to previous losses scattered in the gilded background and Herod's crown. In overall fair condition.


"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.

NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."

Cataloguing

Provenance

Wickenburg collection, Gleichenberg;

With F. Schnittjer and Son, New York;

Their sale, New York, Parke-Bernet, 11 February 1943, lot 326 (as South German School), for $180 to E.&A. Silberman.

Literature

W. Suida, Die Landesbildergalerie in Graz, Vienna 1923, p. 16, cat. nos 33–36;

O. Pächt, Osterreische Tafelmalerei der Gotik, Vienna 1929, p. 83;

O. Bensch, 'Der Meister des Krainburger Altars', in Wiener Jahrbuch für Kunstgeschichte, vol. VII, no. 21, 1930, p. 138;

G. Ring, 'An Austrian Triptych', in The Art Bulletin, vol. 26, no. 1, March 1944, p. 51;

T. Vignević, Der Meister des Krainburger Altars, Ljubljana 1996, pp. 96–97 (as missing).


Catalogue Note

The Massacre of the Innocents was executed by the Master of the Krainburg Altar, active in Austria between the end of the 15th century and the first quarter of the 16th century.


The panel was part of a now dismantled altarpiece that represented the life and martyrdom of Saint Florian on the outside, and scenes from the youth of Christ on the inside. Pächt was the first to attribute this altarpiece to the artist and dates this panel to around 1490;1 Bensch accordingly considers it an early work.2 The four panels that constituted the left wing of the altar are kept at Museum Johanneum in Graz. The Massacre of Innocents was the upper part of the right wing according to Bensch, along with The Funeral of St Florianus which was identified by Suida in 1923 as part of the Wickenburg collection in Gleichenberg.3 Both panels appeared in New York a few years later, before the present picture was sold at auction in 1943 (see Provenance).


1 See Pächt 1929, p. 83.

2 See Bensch 1930, p. 138.

3 See Suida 1923, p. 16, cat. nos 33–36.

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