Painting Attributed to Naldini, ca. 1575
Well, this has been in my wife's family for a number of years. A distant relative of my father-in-law basically conveyed the painting to him. She had inherited it from her father, who was a prominent political figure in Philadelphia around the Civil War era. Family history has it that he brought this painting back from Europe in 1867. In 1979 my father-in-law sent photographs of the painting to a gentleman at the Fogg Museum at Harvard, who responded with an opinion that it was by Naldini. Which, from looking at the Internet, may be appropriate for this painting because his first name was John the Baptist. They indicated if it was what it was portrayed to be, it was probably worth about $10,000 to $12,000.
The subject of the painting is a Madonna and child and the infant John the Baptist. Now, it's an Italian painting of the 16th century. The concept that it might be attributed to Naldini seems interesting. He also did a chapel devoted to the works of the life of John the Baptist, so that his name Giovanni Battista Naldini. He's 1537 to 1591 in Florence. One of the things about old masters is they aren't signed often. So there's always a discussion of who they're by. This particular piece doesn't have any labels or exhibition history or provenance, so what you have to rely upon is somebody's letter, the leading authority in the field. That could make a great deal of difference in the value. Naldini certainly is a possibility. The faces and the period and all look like it. If we were to auction it, we would probably, at this point, say "attributed to Naldini." In that case, we would say about $20,000 to $30,000 as the estimate.
Now, if you were to get a good letter and the right expert to pass judgment on this, we would probably put it in as fully ascribed to Naldini with an estimate of $100,000 to $150,000.
Wow, that's wonderful.
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