Now preserved in the Biblioteca de la Abadía of Montserrat (Ms. 66), this precious book of hours was decorated by Jean Bourdichon (1457/59-1521), a royal artist active in Tours and Paris. The kings Louis XI, Charles VIII, Louis XII, and François I had him make stained glass windows, coins, and illuminated manuscripts among other works.
Jean Bourdichon painted this devotional book for a woman. The heraldry depicted on folio 56 evidence that Ippolita d’Aragona was the patron of this devotional book made between 1495 and 1504.
Jean Bourdichon’s Elegant Style and Original Effects
The richly illuminated book of hours of Ippolita d’Aragona was decorated with the elegant style that Bourdichon also exhibited in such complex works as the Grandes Heures of Anne of Brittany (Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Ms. Lat. 9474), and the Hours of Charles VIII (Madrid, Biblioteca Nacional, Ms. Vit. 24-1).
The illuminator juxtaposed repeated small brush strokes, he meticulously rendered in painting the physical appearance of different materials, for example recreating the effects of transparency visible in some fictive textiles.
Anticipating certain film-making effects, some illuminations in the manuscript display figures in a dramatic close-up position, a type of shot which tightly frames a person or an object.
We have 3 facsimiles of the manuscript "Book of Hours of Ippolita Maria Sforza":
- Libro de horas de Hipolita de Aragon y Sforza (Triptico de Montserrat) facsimile edition published by CM Editores, 2014
- Triptico de Montserrat (Library Edition) facsimile edition published by CM Editores, 2014
- Triptico de Montserrat (Deluxe Edition) facsimile edition published by CM Editores, 2014