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Artemisia Gentileschi, Betsabea, sold at € 216.750. Photo: Sotheby's.

MILAN.- Two Magnificent views of Venice and Istanbul by Boldini and Zonaro lead the Top ten list in Sotheby's 19th Century Paintings auction, just before the beautiful Betsabea by Artemisia Gentileschi and the magnificent portrait of a gentleman by Lavinia Fontana.

87.5% is a high percentage for this Milanese sale - one of the highest sold percentages for a Milan Old Master and 19th Century Paintings auction - which was characterized by a packed and active saleroom and twenty telephones connected with Italian private collectors, international art dealers and Italian Bank Foundations.

Alberto Chiesa, Director of Old Master paintings department comments: ” I am very satisfied since all the important paintings of the sale were successfully sold and, besides this, I would like to underline the constant interest for the fondi oro”.

The Renaissance was well represented by the brilliant prices of Giove e Antiope by Cavalier d’Arpino (sold at € 120,750) and by Portrait of Gentleman by Lavinia Fontana (sold at € 186,750); also the Baroque was positively exemplified by the precious Betsabea by Artemisia and by the fascinating Caravagesque painting , L’incredulità di San Tommaso, sold at € 108,750.

Rococò at its best, with De Mura, whose paintings nearly doubled the price previously registered at Sotheby’s Milan in 2000.

Esmeralda Benvenuti, Director of the 19th Century Paintings department observes: “The beautiful view of Istanbul by Zonaro, which was lively contended during the auction, is a sort of “summa” of the characteristics of this section: all paintings coming from private collections and perfectly conserved. I am also very satisfied with the results achieved by the magnificent Boldini’s View of Venice, a “unicum” in the traditional production of this important artist from Ferrara. Moreover I would like to remember Venditrice di frutta by Emilio Longoni, one of the first examples of Divisionism, executed in 1891, a very significant painting sold at € 186,750.”

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G. Boldini, L’isola di San Giorgio a Venezia, sold at € 258,750. Photo: Sotheby's