The only known examples of Montelupo ware with monochrome blue decoration on a near-white ground. That combination recalls the porcelain that had been the pride of Grand Duke Francesco I de’ Medici in Florence. Bernardo Buontalenti was in charge of that enterprise. These large jars, therefore, represent a prolongation of that local tradition, even though the material, size, and style differ. The latter can be associated with Buontalenti’s principal pupil, Giulio Parigi, who also worked for the Medici. Hence we are tempted to classify these jars as "bellissima robba a grotesche," as mentioned in the Medici account books of 1619.
Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings
Marking: On both sides: [curved fishhook]
[ sale, Sotheby Parke Bernet , New York, February 27–March 1, 1975, no. 47; sold to MMA ]