The buyer of the early 16th century painting of a censing Angel by the German artist Bernhard Strigel which was sold for a hammer price of €2.8m (£2.37m) by Artpaugée in Toulouse in February last year has been announced as the Louvre Abu Dhabi.
The museum already had the pendant to this work, another censing angel from the same altarpiece which sold at auction in Paris in 2008. The painting sold in Toulouse last February has now been restored and framed and both angels are now on display at the Abu Dhabi museum.
The reunited panels were last together over two centuries ago when they belonged to the art collector François-Louis-Esprit Dubois (1758-1828). They became separated when they featured in successive sales in Paris from Dubois’ collection in 1813 and 1816.
Meanwhile, the Louvre announced early last month that it has acquired two missing elements from the chambre of Juliette Recamier that featured in an auction held on December 4 last year in Fontainebleau by Osenat.
The museum already held a number of the furnishings of Madame Recamier’s bedchamber in its collection but two missing elements: a statue of Le Silence by Joseph Chinard and a torchère with a pineapple-topped light fitting which had stood either side of Recamier’s bed remained in private hands.
They came up for sale in the Osenat auction, offered by the descendants of François-Dominique Mosselman who purchased Recamier’s celebrated town house and its contents in 1808.
The Louvre was understandably keen to secure these final elements. As reported in ATG No 2573, it managed to acquire the torchère by right of pre-emption at the auction for a hammer price of €68,000 (£59,130), but missed out to a collector on the Chinard statue which fetched an auction record price of €720,000 (£626,085) hammer.
However, thanks to a generous gesture by this collector, who understood the importance of the two pieces to the museum, the Louvre was able to buy back the statue thus enabling it to complete a reassembly of the elements of Juliette Recamier’s bedroom.