Alberto Sangorski, illuminated Songs and sonnets by William Shakespeare

Alberto Sangorski was an extraordinarily talented calligrapher and illuminator of the early 20th century, who produced several lavishly decorated manuscripts for works of William Shakespeare, Lord Tennyson, Edgar Allan Poe, and other great poets. His works are characterized by a distinct semi-Gothic script style, with beautifully detailed, illuminated borders and initials heightened with gold leafs, and inserted watercolor miniatures referencing famous paintings by earlier and contemporary artists like English Pre-Raphaelite painter John William Waterhouse. He has worked with Riviére & Son and Sangorski & Sutcliffe, the two legendary book binder companies of the era, producing one of a kind books that are considered beautiful artifacts.


Giuseppe Castiglione (1688-1766) was an Italian artist and lay Jesuit brother who spent most of his life in the Qing court of the Chinese Emperor as official principal court painter under the name Lang Shining. Castiglione forged a new style, adapting the taste and tradition of Chinese style painting and combining its elements with his Western training in art. Among his most beautiful works is an album that is considered a masterpiece of the Yongzheng period: Immortal Blossoms In An Everlasting Spring (Xian’e Changchun) – 16 leaves of traditional flower-and-bird silk paintings created in his merged style between 1723-35.