fun with botero

Having discussed my interest in images in a book by Botero, I went ahead and ordered a copy online. It arrived last week. It’s a facsimile that is printed on demand. It’s a chunky tome, hardcover and well bound…well worth the $64 I paid for it. Unfortunately it doesn’t include any of the images. None whatsoever. Initially I thought there was a mixup with the book title and I ordered the wrong one.

It turns out that the version with the fantastical images was published in 1618, after Botero’s death whereas I’d bought the 1596 facsimile. However the woodcuts for the images would have been prepared during the 16th century, possibly for another work. The images were included in an “aggiunta” or appendix, that was attached to the fourth part. There were a total of 32 woodcuts included in the additional section. I found out most of the information via the notes for an edition that Horden House is selling…though I’m less keen to spend $32k on that copy.

Luckily I don’t have to, as I have at least found scanned versions of the Aggiunta online and available for download. I haven’t found a print-on-demand version though will investigate whether I can print this version. It turns out that the images themselves aren’t by Botero, but by Hans Burgkmair, a German woodcut printmaker of the 16th century. There was a book published in 1960 that included the Botero images with an introduction my Walter Oakeshott. However only 50 of those were produced and I haven’t found one for sale.

There is another work that features images by Burgkmair, “Triumph of Maxmilian I: 137 Woodcuts by Hans Burgkmair and Others“, and several copies of the 1965 work are available via abebooks. While I doubt very much that any are of the Botero images, reading a comment elsewhere, I get the impression that Burgkmair’s work is worth exploring further and so look forward to the arrival of yet another book.

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