(iv) Patronage of Some Private Individuals
The documents concerning the building and decoration of Ca’ d’oro, found among the archives of the Procurators of San Marco, form one of the fullest illustrations of a private individual’s patronage in the early Quattrocento. Marin Contarini was clearly and fastidiously aware of exactly what sort of work he wanted done, and businesslike in keeping his records. For no other Venetian patrician’s house are there such copious papers; but perhaps for no other house would they have been so interesting. For Ca’ d’oro represents a florid peak of Venetian Gothic art, built at the same time as a more sober and Romanising architecture was under way in Florence. Marin Contarini had been employing stone-cutters since 1421, but it was only in April 1430 that the contract with Giovanni and Bartolomeo Bon was drawn up for the final rendering of the façade, followed by the present contract for touching it up in colour. Nothing much is known about the painter, described in the Venetian form as ‘Zuan de Francia’ (Jean Charlier?), though his name is a reminder of the northern influences which continued to enter Venice.
KeywordsFine Gold White Lead Main Wall Italian Text Present Contract
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