by Antonio Gesino
The Department of Old Masters enjoyed a very satisfying first semester of 2016 that made new records and confirmed its position as one of the strongest departments at Wannenes. The two auctions in the first part of the year made a total of 3,465,428 Euro with an increase of 55.9% compared to the previous year. The semester’s top lot was the large painting from the collection of the well-known antique dealer from Turin, Giancarlo Gallino, by the fifteenth-century artist, Neri di Bicci. The painting featured The Archangel Raphael and Tobias with Six Saints and represents an extraordinary moment, in terms of artistic expression and superb degree of preservation, in the history of Florentine art. The work demonstrates the artist’s ability to employ the most avant-garde elements in Renaissance art in a style that was both communicative and effectively expressive. The painting was sold for a record price for the Old Masters Department at 806,000 Euro, and was also the best world price ever achieved by the artist.