Mattia Preti back in Malta

August 3 2020

Image of Mattia Preti back in Malta

Picture: Times Malta

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Maltese Government has acquired a painting that came up for sale in January at Sotheby's. Mattia Preti's Boethius Consoled by Philosophy was once part of the collection held in the Grand Master's Palace in Valetta. The above watercolour by Charles de Brocktorff shows the painting hanging in the rooms of the palace.

Times of Malta has published an article which describes the circumstances how the picture became known to the authorities there. The article claims that the picture 'mysteriously disappeared' from the palace in Valetta a century ago. In 2007 the art historian Theresa Vella began to look into what happened to the work for it then to reappear earlier this year at auction. The Sotheby's catalogue notes indicate it ended up in the collection of a historical society in Ohio before being sold at auction in 1992.

The picture was bought by the Maltese authorities for $1.46m (inc. fees) at the January Old Masters Sale in New York.

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