UK bans export of £ 17million Italian bronze cockade | Art

The UK has temporarily banned the export of a late 15th century bronze cockade made in the Lombard city of Mantua and valued at £ 17million.

The Renaissance cockade, which depicts Venus, the Roman goddess of love, surrounded by her lover Mars, her husband Vulcan and her son Cupid, risks being sold abroad unless a British buyer is found .

Culture Minister Caroline Dinenage announced the ban in a statement saying the cockade was larger, more complex and more refined than other examples of British collections produced in Mantua around this time.

The MP for Gosport said: “This play is an amazing combination of myth and mystery. I hope a UK buyer can be found so that researchers can reveal their secrets and the public can see this striking design on display.

The ban follows advice from the Review Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest, which said its size and unique composition made the cockade “extremely interesting in a way from a technical point of view as well as an object of exceptional beauty ”.

Although the artist is not known, committee member Stuart Lochead said the piece shows clear ties to Donatello and Mantegna.

“The remarkable craftsmanship, aesthetics and mystery of this sculpture is captivating and its export from the UK and subsequent loss to the nation would be a disaster,” Lochead added.

The Department of Digital Culture, Media and Sports said the decision on the export license application has been postponed until September 27 in hopes that a domestic buyer can be found.

This can be extended until March 27, 2022 if there is a serious intention on the part of someone to raise funds to purchase the coin.


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