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WARBURG, Aby (Abraham Moritz).

Italienische Kunst und Internationale Astrologie im Palazzo Schifanoja zu Ferrara;...

[with:] Piero della Francesca's Constantinsschlacht in der Aquarellcopie von Johann Anton Rambouse.

Availability: In stock

Published: Rome Maglione & Strini, 1921-22

Stock Code: 128836

£4,500
signed
OR On display in 100 Fulham Road

Notes

First edition, presentation copy to Ludwig Binswanger (1881-1966), inscribed by Warburg: "Seinem lieben und verehrten Dr Ludwig Binswanger, der ihn auf der Heimreise nach Hamburg begleitete, in aufrichtiger Dankbarkeit, ("His dear and revered Dr Ludwig Binswanger, who accompanied him home to Hamburg, in sincere gratitude...") signed Warburg, 16 Aug 1924, 114 Heilwigstrasse".
This is a superb association copy. In 1921, suffering with schizophrenia-like symptoms, Warburg was admitted to Binswanger's Bellevue Sanatorium in Kreuzlingen, on the Swiss shore of Lake Constance. Binswanger had worked and studied with some of the greatest psychiatrists of the era, including Carl Jung, Eugen Bleuler, and Sigmund Freud; his most illustrious patient was the dancer Vaslav Nijinsky. Binswanger's therapeutic contribution to Warburg's eventual recovery has been debated but, as this inscription confirms, Warburg was hugely grateful for his care. Their correspondence and friendship continued until Warburg's death of a heart attack in 1929.
One of the most influential art historians and cultural theorists of the 20th century, Aby Warburg (1866-1929) was the founder of the Warburg Institute, originally the Kulturwissenschaftliche Bibliothek Warburg, a professionally-run private library in his house at 114 Heilwigstraße, Hamburg, where an interdisciplinary community of scholars came together, among them Ernst Cassirer, Erwin Panofsky, Edgar Wind, and Raymond Klibansky. In 1933 the collection was transferred to London as the Warburg Institute, where it remains as one of the world's leading centres for studying the interaction of ideas, images and society.
Warburg's best-known single work is this study of the series of frescoes in the "Hall of the Months" at the Palazzo Schifanoia in Ferrara, Italy, painted by Francesco del Cossa, a lecture originally delivered at the Tenth International Art Historical Congress in Rome in 1912. "It marked Warburg's undisputed leadership in this area of research, with his interpretation of the frescoes in Palazzo Schifanoja, in particular the Decans, the gods ruling 10-day periods... Warburg called them the 'missing links' between image and symbol and introduced his listeners to a new view of astrology, documenting the centuries-old peregrinations of images of the planets from the Mediterranean to the Middle East, Mesopotamia, Egypt, and from there to Spain. By documenting the route an astrological image took, he could present answers concerning the influence of classical antiquity on the artistic culture of Europe" (McEwan, Dorothea. "Aby Warburg's (1866-1929) Dots and Lines. Mapping the Diffusion of Astrological Motifs in Art History." German Studies Review, vol. 29, no. 2, 2006, pp. 243-268.) The artist and his frescoes provided much of the historical background to Ali Smith's 2014 novel How to Be Both.

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Description

Folio, in two parts, pp. 17, [1] blank; 4. Contemporary quarter parchment, brown paper boards, gilt letters to front panel of backstrip, probably bound for the author.

Illustrations

11 and 2 plates, the last in colour.

Condition

Some pencilled marginalia by Binswanger, two text emendations likely authorial. Light browning to endleaves and margins, a very good copy.

Delivery

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