National Gallery of Art, Masterpieces in Miniature: Italian Manuscript Illumincations from the J. Paul Getty Museum
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Image: Attributed to the Illustratore, Harvest Scene; Initial U: A Figure, Bologna, before 1340, cutting from Justinian, Digestum novum (New Digest), Cutting: 14.4 x 7.6 cm (5 11/16 x 3), The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, Ms. 13, verso, 85.MS.213
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The artistic aims of medieval and Renaissance painters often found their purest expression in manuscript illumination, one of the primary art forms of the time. While we continue to prize illuminated manuscripts today as great works of art, their role as books has also remained preeminent. Indeed, the greatest collections of European manuscript illumination still belong to libraries: the Vatican Library in Rome, the British Library in London, and the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York, to name a few of the most renowned repositories. At the same time, illuminated manuscripts provide the most complete surviving record of medieval painting and important evidence of the accomplishment of Renaissance painters.

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image: National Gallery of Art image: Manuscripts in Miniature: Italian Manuscripts Illumination from the J. Paul Getty Museum