An Algardi Bronze for LACMA

The Ahmanson Foundation has given LACMA a Baroque bronze, Alessandro Algardi's Baptism of Christ, in honor of recently retired curator J. Patrice Marandel.

Algardi created the composition in silver, as a 1646 gift for his ascendant patron, Pope Innocent X. The silver version is lost. A number of bronze casts exist. The poses of the two main figures compare to those in The Meeting of Leo I and Attila (1646-53), the marble relief Algardi produced for St. Peter's.

LACMA's bronze was sold by Patricia Wengraf Ltd., London. About 17 inches high, it had been owned by Florence's Pazzi family.

The Algardi caps Marandel's effort to expand LACMA's collection of Italian Baroque sculpture. He  oversaw the acquisition of a portrait bust by Algardi's rival Bernini, and two allegorical statues by Giovanni Baratta.