Auction Catalogs

Detail from annotated auction catalogueCatalogs of art auctions were an important tool for Bernard Berenson in his work as art critic, connoisseur, and intermediary between collectors and dealers, as attested by his handwritten annotations in the margins of many of the catalogs held by the Berenson Library. 

The library currently possesses nearly 14,000 catalogs from the most important auction houses in Europe and America, ranging in date from the eighteenth century to the present and including a large nucleus of several thousand catalogs owned by Berenson. The subjects covered by the catalogs include not only old master paintings and medieval and Renaissance art, but also books, manuscripts, antiquities, printed music and Islamic art.

In HOLLIS, the library's auction catalogs can be located most easily by performing a keyword search on "auction catalogs" (in quotation marks) and then selecting or limiting results to the Biblioteca Berenson.