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The British Museum has been the grateful recipient of a number of donations via the Acceptance in Lieu and Cultural Gifts schemes.
These incentives are legislated by the Department of Digital, Media, Culture & Sport and administered by Arts Council England and have led to key acquisitions.
These opportunities for collections to acquire nationally significant works of art, objects or manuscripts for the benefit of the nation have included a magnificent metalpoint, pen and brown ink and wash drawing by Florentine Renaissance artist Benozzo Gozzoli, thanks to the Acceptance in Lieu scheme.
This double-sided drawing was commissioned by Piero de' Medici and executed between 1459 and 1463. On one side are studies of angels for the Journey of the Magi fresco, still visible in the chapel of the Palazzo Medici-Riccardi in Florence, while on the other is a study of the Madonna and Child.
The drawing is a rare surviving example of Gozzoli's graphic skills. Through his deft command of pen, wash and white heightening, Gozzoli carefully studied the fall of light to establish the sculptural three-dimensionality of the figures and their draperies. It's one of the most significant additions to the Department of Prints and Drawings' Italian Renaissance graphic holdings.
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