Paris: E. Plon et Cie. 1883. Limited First edition. Hardcover. 1/100. Folio (14 1/2 x 11 1/2"). , 414, pp. Contemporary 3/4 morocco over marbled paper covered boards, with gold lettering to spine. Raised bands. Top edge gilt. Ribbon marker. Marbled endpapers. Title page in red and black lettering. Decorative head-, tailpieces, and initials.
Illustrated with numerous in-text b/w illustrations and 82 full-page plates of etchings, duo-tone heliogravures and b/w illustrations reproducing some splendid pieces of Benvenuto Cellini's artwork and designs, this monograph introduces the reader to the fascinating world of one of the most important artists of Mannerism.*
Born in Florence in 1500, Cellini was a celebrated sculptor, goldsmith and writer, as well as one of the most picturesque figures of the Renaissance. Trained as a goldsmith and early proficient in that craft, at 16 he had to leave Florence because of a street fight and spent some months in Siena. In 1519 he moved to Rome, the center of his activity for the next two decades. In Rome, Cellini served popes Clement VII and Paul III, working chiefly on portrait medallions, coins, and jewels. By his own account Cellini was a notable fighter, and in the sack of Rome (1527) he fought against the imperial troops.
An increasingly tense relationship with Paul III and a series of violent incidents led to Cellini's imprisonment in the Castel Sant'Angelo, from which he made a dramatic escape.
Cellini spent the years 1540-1545 in France, serving Francis I as sculptor, decorator, and designer of architectural projects for the royal château of Fontainebleau. In 1543 he completed the famous and elaborate Salt Cellar from a model prepared earlier for Cardinal Ippolito d'Este. Cellini made models for a series of 12 silver statues of gods and goddesses and executed two bronze busts and silver vases (all now lost). He cast the bronze lunette of the Nymph of Fontainebleau (1545).
Works of art such as these as well as Cellini's actual presence in France, along with other artists working under the enthusiastic patronage of Francis I, played an important part in forming the style of French art in the late 16th century and helped to create an international courtly style favored throughout Europe in this period.
One of 100 Artist copies, of which this is No. 9.
Moderate and sporadic rubbing along edges of binding, with some abrasion to leather. Previous owner's bookplate (Occidental College Library) on inside of front cover. Text in French. Binding in overall good to good+, interior in very good condition. g+ to vg. Item #41149
* Mannerism is a style in European art that emerged in the later years of the Italian High Renaissance around 1520, lasting until about 1580 in Italy, when the Baroque style began to replace it. Northern Mannerism continued into the early 17th century.