At the close of Sothebys
four-day Romano sale series in Florence, featuring over 1,800 lots from the spectacular collection of Salvatore Romano and his son Francesco, the total sum exceeded the pre-sale low estimate, reaching 10,508,407 / $15,505,155 (pre-sale estimate: 10,361,060 - 15,435,780 / $15,287,744 -22,775,493). Comprising sculptures from the 14th to the 18th century, Old Masters paintings and drawings from the 1600s and 1700s, 19th-century Italian paintings, furniture and decorative objects including antique textiles and an interesting library, the sale was held on the long terrace running the length of Palazzo Magnani Feroni, which for decades has held the Romano collection in storage and was opened to the public for the first time in over 50 years for the occasion.
Filippo Lotti, Managing Director, Sothebys Italy and auctioneer for the sale, comments: We are extremely pleased with the final results of this landmark sale, and the appeal of the variety of beautiful works of art is evident in the prices achieved as well as by the international spread of buyers across a range of private collectors, trade and public institutions.
The list of the top ten lots sold in the sale demonstrates the fantastic range in artistic disciplines that were included in this sale, with a particular emphasis on the fine Neapolitan workmanship which is so representative of Francesco Romanos family roots in Naples. It has been an historic sale in every sense of the word, since not only is it rare that such a quantity of treasures comes to the market, but the Romano collection as a whole epitomizes an era in Italian craftsmanship and collecting that is long gone, and has been recaptured by the unveiling of the Romano collection which has effectively been frozen in time.
Having first arrived at the Palazzo to start to prepare for this sale over two years ago, it seems hard to believe that the sale has now reached its conclusion. We are honored to have had the opportunity to stage such a special auction and to pay homage to one of the greatest Florentine antique dealers of the 20th century. While the market today is so very different to that in which Francesco Romano himself operated, this sale illustrates that it maintains the tradition of discerning collecting in the fields of fine sculpture, paintings and works of art.