Montblanc pen exhibition: something to write home about

Each year Montblanc creates a limited edition pen to honour the winner of the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award. See this pen and the twenty others on display at Sotheby's in London at the twenty year retrospective of the award from 18 - 21 June.

Montblanc Maecenas pen for the 2011 Montblanc Art Patronage award.

Each year Montblanc creates a limited edition pen to honour the winner of the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award. See this pen and the twenty others on display at Sotheby's in London at the twenty year retrospective of the award from 18 - 21 June. Over the past twenty years the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award has been recognising those whose efforts have made artistic achievements possible through their patronage and support. To honour these remarkable men and women, Montblanc each year creates a limited edition pen awarded to the winner and also on sale to public. The twenty models of pens created to date under this scheme are exhibited at Sotheby's Bond Street premises. Pen lovers will be flocking to see the show that details the inspiration of the twenty designs that are linked to art patrons ranging from Semiramis to Lorenzo de Medici and Sir Henry Tate. The pens are made in two editions: one limited to 888 pieces made in precious materials such as gold and a second more accessible series of 4,810 pens (the number is not random: it is the height of the Montblanc mountain). Collectors strive to have the complete set of twenty, as seen by auctions prices for these pens. This year, the UK winner is none other than Prince Charles, who will be receiving a 'Gaius Maecenas' penas well as 15,000 euro towards his charity of choice. This year's pen, is inspired by the Ancient Roman, Gaius Cilnius Maecenas, the original patron himself who us considered by founding father of cultural patronage, who supported Horace, Virgil and Propertius amongst others. His name has come to mean 'patron of the arts' in many languages, including French, Italian, Spanish and even Japanese. The body of the pen resembles a marble Roman column and inscribed on the cap is a sentence from the letter that the poet Horace wrote to Maecenas. A laurel wreath is engraved around the top ring of the cap and a miniaturised Roman coin  is inlaid into the base of the pen. The exhibition will be at Sotheby's London until 21st June and is open from 9 am to 4:30pm at

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