Jori Finkel reports in the New York Times that the original marble bust by Bernini of a portrait of Pope Paul V has been bought by the Getty. There’s a bronze version in Copenhagen but the marble original was originally thought to be lost. Now it seems to have simply been mis-attributed. Finkel gives us only hints at what the real story might be. Who recognized it as a Bernini and under what circumstances?
The bust changed countries and owners a few times before being recognized as the Borghese Bernini and sold to the Getty in a private sale by Sotheby’s, completed this month. The Getty Museum director Timothy Potts calls the rediscovery “an extremely rare and remarkable event,” adding that the bust would “become one of a handful of the most important sculptures in the Getty’s collection, no question.” He has for that reason decided to place the sculpture on view at the Getty Center starting Thursday.
Rare Bernini Sculpture Surfaces at the Getty (NYTimes.com)