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Statuette of Saint John

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Standing figure on a capital. Solid cast, chased, and mercury gilded. With his left hand raised to cover one side of his face in a gesture of mourning, John gazes slightly to the right and stands in a frontal pose holding a closed book with a central clasp in his right hand. His round face with...

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1956, Walter Bornheim (b. 1888), Munich; 1956, sold by Bornheim, through August Laube, Zürich, to the MFA for $568. (Accession Date: October 11, 1956) ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: Walter Bornheim, a sculpture dealer based in Munich, is known for being one of Hermann Goering's most important art buyers. He was responsible for exporting many works of art from France to Germany during World War II. In addition, he took over the art gallery A. S. Drey when it was "Aryanized" in 1936. The United States Office of Strategic Services' Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) issued a detailed interrogation report on his wartime activities as an art dealer in 1945. It is not known how this statuette -- at one time, probably part of a Crucifixion group -- came into his possession.

Credit Line

H. E. Bolles Fund

Italian (Tuscany?), Medieval (Gothic), second half of 13th century

Object Place



8.1 x 1.9 x 1.6 cm (3 3/16 x 3/4 x 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Gilded copper (100% copper, traces of zinc, lead and tin)