Supplementary essay for an exhibition of plaquettes at the Villa Cagnola library: Il fascino dell’antico nelle placchette in bronzo della Collezione Cagnola (October 2017)
A survey of Guglielmo della Porta’s influence on the artistic personality of El Greco. Also suggested is the possibility El Greco could have worked for Guglielmo providing miniatures for use in the production of altar crosses and tabernacles during the painter’s enigmatic Roman period.
Proposed is an identity for the elusive plaquette maker dubbed Pseudo-Fra Antonio da Brescia. Also suggested is the possibility a plaquette may have been inspired by Albrecht Durer’s visit to Bologna in 1506-07.
Examined is the discovery of an engraved rock crystal evidently serving as the master prototype for a quantity of late 15th century bronze plaquettes. A relationship of the rock crystal with Lorenzo de’ Medici is drawn by way of a relationship with its subject: a Head of Pan. Also discussed is the crystal’s reproduction in a sketch by a young Michelangelo and finally surveyed is the curious loss of the object’s meaning in exchange for what would become a universally vilified image of Attila the Hun.
A crucifix model currently attributed to Giambologna should instead be reconstituted as a work by Guglielmo della Porta and his circle of collaborators.
A series of impressive gold reliefs currently associated with Antonio Gentili da Faenza are instead suggested as the work of Cesare Targone.
The most popular devotional image of Christ, ca. 1600, here attributed to Jacob Cornelis Cobaert after a design by Guglielmo della Porta.
Riddick collection No. 61 – Summary of a unique 17th century Sicilian devotional plaque here attributed to a Master of the Fercolo di St. Agatha panels.
Riddick collection No. 68 – Summary of a rare, early 17th century plaque of the Flagellation after Giuseppe Cesari d’Arpino.
Riddick collection No. 71 – Summary of an unpublished Spanish pax depicting the Flagellation, here attributed to the Circle of Francisco de Alfaro, early 17th century.