Collection of the University of Pittsburgh Art Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA. Purchase of Miss Helen Clay Frick
Nicholas Lochoff (1872-1948)
Simone Martini (circa 1285-1344)
after Simone Martini (circa 1285-1344)

The Annunciation

circa 1911 – 1948 (Date created)
75 in L x 73 ¼ in W (Image)
Painted after Simone Martini's The Annuniciation (1333), originally the central panel of the alterpeice of the chapel of Sant'Ansano in the Cathedral of Siena. The paiting depits the angel Gabriel annoucing to Mary "Ave, gratia plena, dominus tecum" (Luke 1:28), or "Hail, thou art full of grace, the lord is with thee." The background is gilded gesso, a feature that would give way to realistic settings later in the Renaissance.
Exhibition Label
Nicholas Lochoff (d.1948)/ after/ Simone Martini (Sienese, c. 1284-1344)/ ANNUNCIATION/ Original (1333) in Uffizi, Florence/ Tempera on wood panel/ Perhaps Simone's best-known work, the original was the central part of an altarpiece for Siena Cathedral. The angel Gabriel's words are "Ave gratia plena dominus tecum" (Luke 1:28), meaning "Hail, thou art full of grace, the Lord is with thee." The plaid cloak Gabriel wears billows in suggestion of sudden arrival. Mary pulls away, uncertain of how to react to his words, as the Gospel suggests. Simone here accomplished the interaction between figures and movement that the artists of the Renaissance would strive to achieve. In contrast, the gold background of gilded gesso would disappear in the later period in favor of more realistic settings. Lochoff reproduced the original's tempera paint, a pigment mixed with egg yolk that was a forerunner of oil paint. ;Finished in 1333 for the altar of the chapel of Sant'Ansano in the Cathedral of Siena, the painting was moved to Sant'Ansano di Castel Vecchio late in the sixteenth century. The Annunication scene in the original is placed between Saints Ansano and Giulietta, painted by Simone's collaborator, Lippo Memmi. In 1799 the painting was transferred to the Uffizi Gallery, It is now exhibited there in an elaborate nineteenth-century Gothic framework (Walter Read Hovey, The Nicholas Lochoff Cloister of The Henry Clay Frick Fine Arts Building, 1965).
In Collection
Purchased by Miss Helen Clay Frick for the University of Pittsburgh (1959-present) Boris Lochoff (until 1959); By 1917 Lochoff had only finished and sent back to his home country 8 of these paintings. That same year there was a revolution in Russia. Lochoff was therefore stranded in Italy and cut off from the support previously provided by the Moscow Museum of Art. He was forced to sell the remaining paintings to other buyers. These buyers included Harvard University, the Portland Art Museum in Oregon, and the Frick Art Reference Library in New York. After Lochoff's death, Helen Clay Frick, the woman who started the Fine Arts Department at the University of Pittsburgh and donated the Frick Fine Arts building to the University, acquired this collection with the help of critic and connoisseur, Bernard Berenson. She then donated it to the University of Pittsburgh to adorn the walls of this cloister.
Mary Logan Berenson, "A Reconstructor of Old Masterpieces", The American Magazine of Art. (November 1930), pp. 628-638. Zoa Grace Hawley, "New Life for Old Masters", The Christian Science Monitor, Weekly Magazine section. (October 31, 1934), pp. 8-9; ill. p. 8. Zoe Grace Hawley, "New Life for Old Masters: Nicholas Lochoff - captures aura of antiquity in exact copies of Italy's fading treasures". (1934) Edgar Peters Bowron, "European Paintings Before 1900 in the Fogg Art Museum". Harvard Art Museums. Cambridge, MA. (1990). pp. 131, not repr. "[Unidentified article]". Fogg Art Museum Notes. Fogg Art Museum. Cambridge, MA. (February 12, 1921). p.6, repro. b/w. "A Copy of Gozzoli's Masterpiece". The Harvard Crimson. Cambridge, MA. (February 12, 1921). p.6, repro. b/w. Mary Logan Berenson. "Preserving the Old Masters by Copying", Transcript (December 31, 1930). p.5, reproduced b/w. Mary Logan Berenson. "A Reconstructor of Old Masterpieces", The American Magazine of Art. (November 1930). pp. 628-638. Royal Cortissoz. "Their Appeal to Lovers of our True Tradition". New York Herald Tribune. New York, NY. (March 15, 1931). p.8 Maurice Grosser. "Painter's Progress". C.N. Potter. New York, NY. (1971). Reproduced. p.32, fig. 10. Edgar Peters Bowron. "European Paintings Before 1900 in the Fogg Art Museum". Harvard University Art Museums. Cambridge, MA. (1990). p.110. Bill Homisak. "Fabulous Renaissance fakes at Frick offer faux fun". Tribune-Review. (August 27, 1989). Jonathon Keats. "Forged: Why Fakes Are the Great Art of Our Age". Oxford University Press. (2013).

Please note that cataloging is ongoing and that some information may not be complete.

Related Terms
Architectural decorations and ornaments
Tempera paintings