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Fine art 7 Apr, 2021
Annibale carracci “madonna and child with saints
I have something else :) .. I know you will say that the original hangs in PN in Bologna .. This painting is from the 16th century (I once bought it in a gallery for my birthday). Dimensions H94.7cm W64.7cm which is one third of the painting in Italy to the millimeter. Oil on canvas. Artist's signature and date (1581) - that is several years earlier than the one in Italy .. I think this was a preparatory work for that big one. It's very dirty - I mean old brown varnish. I have never given it to renovation because it looks good as it is. A friend of mine from Oxford University has only recently been working on Saint Catherine's lips and neck. That's probably the only thing you need to fix. No one has ever seen it and valued it and whether it is authentic( in past 20-30 years) It would be strange if someone copied it in the artist's times.. Apart from Annibale signature there are many other descriptions and corrections and details that a counterfeiter would not do- probably . Everything can be seen only with UV and infrared light and with computer processing. Sometimes it is difficult to see something clearly from the photos due to my low quality equipment (iPhone,uv lamp from amazon). The photos can not be enlarged because the pixel get blurry. I think this painting is an interesting object for additional research. Frame is not original. Some restoration visible under UV but not visible on the painting or know about any done in the past.Signature on alter next to saint Catherine foot. Same place is like Jesus on the Cross with the plaque showing his wine above the cross (?) letters visible in the sequence, so my guess (photo)about 18 cm high -The Crucifixion -his work from 1581..)I think ,above signature in Latin “frago f “ -painted .. If compared to painting in Italy or preparatory drawing - very similar and nearly identical.This one is more in his style and the other one was more controversial and early attributed to Massari. Looks like has been relined at some point.
Appraisal in progress
Estimate: $0 - $0

What is fine art?

Fine art is literally defined as “creative art, especially visual art whose products are to be appreciated primarily or solely for their imaginative, aesthetic, or intellectual content” or “an activity requiring great skill or accomplishment.” It is important to note that the descriptor “fine” art is not meant to indicate the quality of the work, but rather emphasize the discipline’s purity according to the traditional Western foundations. By definition, fine art distinguishes itself from the equally admirable, but intrinsically practical applied and decorative arts. These are often also divided using the terms “major arts” and “minor arts”. The minor arts would generally include genres such as medieval art and the decorative arts.  

Fine art purposefully lacks a practical function and exists for the sake of beauty; art for art’s sake (the utility of architecture is an important exception to this rule). The height of fine artistic practice was said to be a demonstration of the full expression of the artist’s imagination and creativity. However, the emphasis on the aesthetic beauty of fine art, does not negate a deeper intellectual meaning behind the art. Fine art is also created and valued for its intellectual meaning and purpose. The concept of fine art is therefore considered an invention of the early modern era. Scholars often refer to the art of earlier periods as a part of a “system of the arts” that consisted of the artist fulfilling the role of artisan, a skilled maker or practitioner. Art was a skill and the fruits of that skill usually served a practical purpose.

Historically speaking, fine art has included the disciplines of painting, sculpture, architecture, music, poetry, and theatrical performance (theater and dance). Today, the definition of fine art has expanded to include film, photography, design, video production, video editing, and conceptual art. The term “fine art” usually encopasses art of the western world from the Renaissance on, though it can be expanded to include genres of art from other cultures, particularly those from East Asia. 

How is fine art valued?

In determining the value of fine art, factors such as artist, date, provenance, medium, and condition are all taken into consideration.

Artworks by well-known artists with an established market presence will have increased value and a significant, documented provenance could also affect value. In dealing with fine art, the medium also becomes important. Paintings and sculptures tend to be larger and are usually more valuable than drawings and prints.

The condition is often essential in establishing value as well. Any current or previous damage and subsequent restoration should be taken into consideration. Drawings and prints, which usually have paper as the base or support are usually more delicate than painting and sculpture and tend to have condition issues over time.

What are the different categories of fine art?


  • Painting: the most popular media of painting include: oil, tempera and acrylic
  • Drawing: the most popular media of drawing include: charcoal/chalk, conte, graphite, and ink
  • Mosaic: the production of a picture of pattern by the arrangement of small colored pieces of hard stone, metal, or glass referred to as tesserae
  • Print-making: popular methods of printmaking include: etching, drypoint, engraving, and aquatint
  • Calligraphy: decorative handwriting or handwritten lettering
  • Photography: popular methods of photography include digital and analog or film photography


  • Architecture: the art of designing and constructing structures and buildings 
  • Pottery: the craft or profession of making pottery; popular types include: earthenware, porcelain, and stoneware 
  • Sculpture: the art of making two- or three-dimensional representative or abstract forms, especially by carving stone, wood, or stone or by casting metal or plaster

Conceptual Art

  • Music
  • Poetry

Performing Art

  • Dance
  • Theater
  • Film


Lindsey Bourret is the Managing Director at Mearto. In addition to overseeing the daily operations of the business, she also enjoys sharing her extensive knowledge of the fine art and antiques market with our customers through our website, blog, e-newsletter and social media accounts.

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