The Adventures of Ulysses

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Apollonio di Giovanni
Italian, 1415/17-1465

The Adventures of Ulysses, 1435/45

Tempera on panel
42 x 131.7 cm (16 9/16 x 51 7/8 in.)
In white pigment, PVLIFEMO (three times on left), VLISSE (seven times in all, but on two occasions, above the scenes of Ulysses found by Nausicaa and Ulysses meeting Irus, very rubbed), [ER]ME, INACO, and PENOLOPE (twice)
Mr. and Mrs. Martin A. Ryerson Collection, 1933.1006

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

London, Royal Academy of Arts, Works by the Old Masters, 1875, cat. 169, as “A Landscape, with Architecture and Figures. Painter Unknown.”

Brooklyn, Institute of Arts and Sciences Museum, European Art, 1450 – 1500, 1936, cat. 15, as Dido Master.

Publication History

Art Institute of Chicago, General Catalogue of Paintings, Sculpture, and Other Objects in the Museum (Chicago, 1913), p. 197, no. 2088.

Art Institute of Chicago, General Catalogue of Paintings, Sculpture, and Other Objects in the Museum (Chicago, 1914), p. 208, no. 2088.

Paul Schubring, Cassoni: Truhen und Truhenbilder der italienischen Frührenaissance (Leipzig, 1915), vol. 1. pp. 113, 276, no. 253, vol. 2, pl. 56, no. 253.

Art Institute of Chicago, Catalogue of Paintings, Drawings, Sculpture, and Architecture (Chicago, 1917), p. 164.

Art Institute of Chicago, Handbook of Sculpture, Architecture, Paintings, and Drawings (Chicago, 1920), p. 62.

Art Institute of Chicago, Handbook of Sculpture, Architecture and Paintings (Chicago, 1922), p. 71.

Art Institute of Chicago, Handbook of Sculpture, Architecture, and Paintings (Chicago, 1923), p. 71.

G. E. Kaltenbach, “Cassoni,” American Magazine of Art 14 (1923), p. 599, ill.

Frank Jewett Mather, A History of Italian Painting (New York, 1923), pp. 182-83.

Art Institute of Chicago, A Guide to the Paintings in the Permanent Collection (Chicago, 1925), p. 159, no. 2018.

Rose Mary Fischkin, Martin A. Ryerson Collection of Paintings and Sculpture, XIII to XVIII Century, Loaned to The Art Institute of Chicago, unpub. MS, 1926, Ryerson Library, The Art Institute of Chicago, pp. 16-17.

Raimond van Marle, The Development of the Italian Schools of Painting, vol. 10 (The Hague, 1928), p. 554.

Art Institute of Chicago, A Guide to the Paintings in the Permanent Collection (Chicago, 1932), p. 180, no. 282.11.

Bernard Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance (Oxford, 1932), p. 346.

Bernard Berenson, Pitture italiane del Rinascimento (Milan, 1936), p. 283.

Bernard Berenson, Italian Pictures of the Renaissance: Florentine School (London, 1963), vol. 1, p. 18, vol. 2, figs. 736a-b.

William R. Valentiner, Paintings in the Collection of Martin A. Ryerson, unpub. MS [1932], Archives, The Art Institute of Chicago, n. pag.

Wolfgang Stechow, “Marco del Bouno and Apollonio di Giovanni, Cassone Painters,” Bulletin of the Allen Memorial Art Museum 1 (1944), p. 17.

“Meister der Dido-Truhe” in Ulrich Thieme and Felix Becker, Allgemeines Lexikon der bildenden Künstler von der Antike bis zur Gegenwart, vol. 37 (Leipzig, 1950), p. 79.

Art Institute of Chicago, Paintings in The Art Institute of Chicago: A Catalogue of the Picture Collection (Chicago, 1961), p. 299.

Hans Huth, “Italienische Kunstwerke im Art Institute von Chicago, USA,” in Miscellanea Bibliothecae Hertzianae (Munich, 1961), p. 516.

Barbara Wriston, “Joiners’ Tools in The Art Institute of Chicago,” Art Institute of Chicago Museum Studies 2 (1967), p. 77, detail ill.

Ellen Callmann, Apollonio di Giovanni (Oxford, 1974), pp. 16–19, 53, no. 3, pl. 29.

Burton B. Fredericksen and Federico Zeri, Census of Pre-Nineteenth-Century Italian Paintings in North American Public Collections (Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1972), pp. 12, 478, 571.

Ellen Callmann, “Apollonio di Giovanni and Painting for the Early Renaissance Room,” Antichità viva 27, 3-4 (1988), p. 11, fig. 20.

Christopher Lloyd, Italian Paintings before 1600 in the Art Institute of Chicago. A Catalogue of the Collection (Chicago, 1993), pp. 6-9, ill.
Sophie Desrosiers, “Trois répresentations d’un métier à la tire florentine du XVe siècle,” Bulletin du Centre International d’Étude des Textiles Anciens, no. 71 (1993), pp. 37–47, fig. 1 (detail).

Ellen Callmann, “Apollo di Giovanni (di Tomaso)” in Dictionary of Art, vol. 2 (London, 1996). p. 288, ill. (detail).

Graham Hughes, Renaissance Cassoni. Masterpieces of early Italian Art: Painted Marriage Chest 1400–1550 (Alfriston and London, 1997), p. 17, ill. (detail).

Luke Syson and Dora Thornton, Objects of Virtue. Art in Renaissance Italy (London, 2001), pp. 240, 243, figs. 191 and 193.

Jerzy Miziołek, “The "Odyssey" Cassone Panels from the Lanckoroński Collection: On the Origins of Depicting Homer's Epic in the Art of the Italian Renaissance,” Artibus et Historiae 27, no. 53 (2006), pp. 57–58, 61–66, 72, 75, figs. 8, 15a, 26a.

Ownership History

William Graham (d. 1885), Grosvenor Place, London, by 1875 [lent to London 1875]; sold Christie’s, London, April 8, 1886, no. 172, as “The labours of Ulysses: from a Cassone,” to Martin Colnaghi, acting on behalf of Francis George Baring, for 29 gns.; Francis George Baring, second Earl of Northbrook, from 1886 to at least 1894 [The date 1894 is provided by two labels on the back of the panel]. Robert Langston Douglas, London; sold by Langton Douglas to Julius Böhler, Munich [confirmed by a label on the back of the panel and a letter of April 27, 1987 from Julius Böhler in Margherita Andreotti in curatorial file]; sold by Böhler to Martin A. Ryerson (d. 1932), Chicago, 1911 [bill of sale in Ryerson papers, Art Institute Archives]; on loan to the Art Institute from 1911; bequeathed to the Art Institute, 1933.