19th Century

Christie's to sell $200m Cox Collection

July 29 2021

Image of Christie's to sell $200m Cox Collection

Picture: Christie's

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Christie's has announced that it will be selling twenty-five masterpieces from the collection of businessman, collector, and philanthropist Edwin Lochridge Cox. This will include several pieces by significant Impressionist artists including works by Van Gogh and Cézanne. Understandably, one of the standout pieces of the sale will be Gustave Caillebotte's Jeune homme à sa fenêtre (pictured) which is rumoured to carry an estimate of $50m. The whole sale is believed to carry a pre-sale estimate of around $200m.

The sales will be held in November and December 2021.

Recent Release: The Renaissance Restored

July 29 2021

Image of Recent Release: The Renaissance Restored

Picture: Getty Publications

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's a recent release that looks like a must-read for those interested in the history of paintings conservation. Getty Publication's new book by Matthew Hayes is entitled The Renaissance Restored - Paintings Conservation and the Birth of Modern Art History in Nineteenth-Century Europe.

According to the blurb:

This handsomely illustrated volume traces the intersections of art history and paintings restoration in nineteenth-century Europe. Repairing works of art and writing about them-the practices that became art conservation and art history-share a common ancestry. By the nineteenth century the two fields had become inseparably linked. While the art historical scholarship of this period has been widely studied, its restoration practices have received less scrutiny-until now. This book charts the intersections between art history and conservation in the treatment of Italian Renaissance paintings in nineteenth-century Europe. Initial chapters discuss the restoration of works by Giotto and Titian, framed by the contemporary scholarship of art historians such as Jacob Burckhardt, G. B. Cavalcaselle, and Joseph Crowe that was redefining the earlier age. Subsequent chapters recount how paintings conservation was integrated into museum settings. The narrative uses period texts, unpublished archival materials, and historical photographs in probing how paintings looked at a time when scholars were writing the foundational texts of art history, and how, simultaneously, contemporary restorers were negotiating the appearances of these works. The book proposes a model for a new conservation history, object focused yet enriched by consideration of a wider cultural horizon.

Owner Sought for Stolen Eugene Boudin

July 28 2021

Image of Owner Sought for Stolen Eugene Boudin

Picture: swindonadvertiser.co.uk

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Swindon Advertiser have published an article about the strange fate of a stolen painting by Eugene Boudin that has ended up with an antique dealer in Royal Wootton Basset. The dealer had bought the picture in good faith from a Lady whose father had acquired the picture at a London flea market. It turned out that the work was stolen from a Mayfair gallery in 1990. An appeal has been made for further information.

Anonymous Buyer Purchases Restituted Courbet for Budapest Museum

July 27 2021

Image of Anonymous Buyer Purchases Restituted Courbet for Budapest Museum

Video: artnews.com

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's some curious news from Hungary that an anonymous buyer has purchased a restituted painting by Gustave Courbet for the Budapest Museum. The painting has a long back story since it was confiscated twice from its original Jewish-Hungarian owner Baron Ferenc Hatvany during the twentieth-century. The painting resurfaced recently was restituted to Hatvany's heirs. It was eventually sold at Sotheby's earlier in May for $320,000 to an anonymous buyer who has lent the work to the Budapest Museum of Fine Arts.

Lloyd Webber Art Collection on Display in Renovated Theatre Royal

July 23 2021

Image of Lloyd Webber Art Collection on Display in Renovated Theatre Royal

Picture: whatsonstage.com

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

An eagle-eyed reader has kindly been in touch with news that Andrew Lloyd Webber has allowed some of his private art collection to be hung inside the newly renovated Theatre Royal on Drury Lane. The theatre, owned by the musicals impresario, has recently undergone a two-year £60m refurbishment and will be opening to the public in due course. Photographs show some of Lloyd Webber's Pre Raphaelite collection hanging in several rooms.

Fortunately, it seems that art and architecture lovers will be able to visit the theatre during the day in due course, which will be an interesting experience I'm sure.

Conserving Wall Paintings by G F Watts

July 23 2021

Video: Leighton House Museum

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Leighton House Museum in West London have published this short video providing some details in regards to the conservation of two wall paintings by George Frederic Watts.

National Gallery to acquire Lawrence's Red Boy

July 22 2021

Image of National Gallery to acquire Lawrence's Red Boy

Picture: The National Gallery, London

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Some significant news today that the National Gallery in London is set to acquire Thomas Lawrence's portrait of Charles William Lambton, known affectionately as The Red Boy.

The sale of the portrait, valued at £9.3m, is being brokered by Christie's and will officially become the property of the gallery when the sale is completed in December 2021. Also of interest is news that the painting will be conserved in the gallery's conservation studios before going on display. I hope they'll make a video showing the transformation, which will surely be quite outstanding.

Ferdinand-Philippe d’Orléans - Images d’un prince idéal

July 12 2021

Image of Ferdinand-Philippe d’Orléans - Images d’un prince idéal

Picture: Musée Ingres Bourdelle à Montauban

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Musée Ingres in Montauban, France, have recently opened their latest exhibition dedicated to the patronage and collection of Ferdinand-Philippe d'Orléans (1810–1842). The exhibition, in collaboration with the Louvre, contains over 200 works of art including examples of his patronage of the likes of Ingres, Barye, Delacroix, Scheffer and Corot.

Courtauld Announces Van Gogh Exhibition for 2022

July 1 2021

Image of Courtauld Announces Van Gogh Exhibition for 2022

Picture: Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Courtauld Gallery in London have announced that they will be hosting an exhibition of Van Gogh's Self-Portraits in 2022. The show, which will open in February 2022, will feature 15 of the artist's works including major loans from the Van Gogh Museum and the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Detroit Institute of Arts; the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC; the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, and the National Gallery, London.

The exhibition is expected to run from 3rd February - 8th May 2022.

Monet Exhibition in Seattle

July 1 2021

Video: Seattle Art Museum

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Seattle Art Museum have opened their latest exhibition today. Monet at Étretat will examine artworks created during the artist's trips to the Normandy coast during the 1880s. It contains 10 works by Monet himself, alongside 12 works by other contemporaries.

Here's the review of the exhibition from The Seattle Times.

The show will run until 17th October 2021.


It seems that these sorts of videos really are in vogue at the moment?!

Turner's Seascape Brought to Life

July 1 2021

Video: Sotheby's

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The battle between which auction house can create the most immersive sweeping view video continues.

Sotheby's have released the following film giving an evocative representation of Turner's Purfleet and the Essex Shore as seen from Long Reach. The painting will feature within their evening sale on 7th July 2021 carrying an estimate of £4m - £6m.

Will these sorts of presentations become a staple of the summer and winter sales? 

Evelyn de Morgan Exhibition in Burnley

June 29 2021

Video: De Morgan Foundation

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The De Morgan Foundation are opening a new exhibition next month in Burnley, Lancashire, entitled Pre-Raphaelite Artist of Hope: Evelyn De Morgan. The show will open in the Towneley Hall on 17th July 2021 and feature 45 works loaned by the foundation.

Rediscovered Constable Poetry Watercolours Up for Sale

June 29 2021

Video: Gorringe's

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Gorringe's auction house in East Sussex will be offering up an interesting book in their sale today. This particular edition of Thomas Gray's Elegy Written in a Country Church-Yard happens to contain three watercolours by John Constable. Constable was asked to contribute illustrations for a printed edition, commissioned it seems by editor John Martin. 

As the catalogue note explains:

All three of Constable’s original completed watercolour designs are included in this specially bound quarto volume of the second ( 1836) edition of Martin’s Elegy, together with fourteen more by other contributors. He clearly went to a great deal of care and trouble over them, making preliminary sketches in watercolour for all three , now mainly held in public collections. 5 He may have produced these as sample designs for Martin to approve. Alternatively, he may have wished them to serve as guides when working up his finished designs, thus mirroring his practice of using same scale sketches for his oil paintings.

The edition will be offered for sale today with a rather punchy estimate of £100k - £150k.

Update - The lot didn't manage to find a buyer. Although of historical interest, one imagines the high estimate might have been rather unrealistic.

Lecture: Monet in Place

June 28 2021

Video: NGV Melbourne

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia, have uploaded a free lecture on Monet's France through his paintings. The talk is presented by Dr Katie Hanson, Curator of Paintings, Art of Europe, at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. 

John Glover Sketchbook heads to Australia

June 25 2021

Image of John Glover Sketchbook heads to Australia

Picture: abc.net.au

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

A reader has very kindly pointed out this news story from Australia. A sketchbook by the artist John Glover (1767-1849), which made £81,000 pounds over its £4,000 estimate at Ewbank's last month, has been reported to have entered a private collection in Australia. The sketchbook contains sheets of a tour made in Scotland during the early nineteenth century. Interestingly, Glover's work is particularly prized in Australia, as he moved to Tasmania in 1831 where he produced several important views of the surrounding landscape.

Nationalmuseum Stockholm purchases first Impressionist in 50 Years

June 24 2021

Image of Nationalmuseum Stockholm purchases first Impressionist in 50 Years

Picture: artnews.com

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Nationalmuseum in Stockholm, Sweden, has announced its first acquisition of an impressionist painting in 50 years. Mary Cassatt's (1844–1926) Portrait of the artist's sister Lydia is believed to be a preliminary study for The Cup of Tea, a painting from 1879–80 now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. The acquisition was made possible by the support of the Hedda and N. D. Qvist Fund.

Dordrecht Museum Loaned a Turner

June 24 2021

Image of Dordrecht Museum Loaned a Turner

Picture: nos.nl

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Dordrecht Museum in the Netherlands has organised the permanent loan of a painting of Whalley Bridge and Abbey by J.M.W. Turner. The picture was purchased at Sotheby's last year by a private collector who has in turn arranged the loan with the museum. Interestingly, the museum will be hanging the piece next to works by Aelbert Cuyp (1620-1691), an artist whose lighting effects and compositions Turner greatly admired. This will be one of two paintings by the British artist on display in a Dutch museum or gallery.

Is this by Van Gogh (?)

May 28 2021

Image of Is this by Van Gogh (?)

Picture: smithsonianmag.com

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Smithsonian Magazine have published an article on the 'controversial' art collector Stuart Pivar's attempt to have a painting he purchased at a local French auction house authenticated as a full-fledged Van Gogh. Although the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam is currently closed due to the ongoing virus crisis, the article claims that the museum had 'made an exception' to take a look at the work. The painting bears and old inscription and signature on the back.

It will be interesting to hear what comes of this, let's hope the magazine publish the results of the museum's findings in due course.

Another Painting Appears Underneath Portrait of Mexican Empress

May 28 2021

Image of Another Painting Appears Underneath Portrait of Mexican Empress

Picture: The Philadelphia Inquirer

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Philadelphia Inquirer published an article earlier this month relating to a discovery made by the Philadelphia Museum of Art in preparation for their revamped early American Art galleries. Indeed, x-rays revealed that hiding underneath two early nineteenth century portraits of the Emperor and Empress of Mexico were two earlier images of King and Queen of Spain, Charles IV and Maria Luisa of Parma. It seems that the artist Josephus Arias Huerta simply painted over to earlier pictures, a practise undertaken often by painters in the past.

The article captures the moment conservator Sarah Mastrangelo noticed an un-associated eye staring out of the Empress's dress:

Later, Sarah Mastrangelo would remember the eye, how it suddenly appeared, staring up at her from within the belly of the empress of Mexico. 

She gasped. 

“What is that?” she said out loud. 

A photographer standing next to her peered over to take a look. 

“It’s an eye,” he said. 

She looked again. What’s it doing there? Why is there an eye hidden beneath the empress’ heavy robes? “Have I been staring at this too long?” she wondered.

Juana Romani (1867-1923), modèle et peintre. A rêve d'absolu

May 26 2021

Image of Juana Romani (1867-1923), modèle et peintre. A rêve d'absolu

Picture: finestresullarte.info

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

It seems that 2021 really is the year of exhibitions dedicated to female artists.

The Musée Roybet Fould in Courbevoie, North Central France, has just opened a new exhibition dedicated to the nineteenth century artist Juana Romani (1867-1923). Although born in Italy, Romani made her fame in Paris with works that looked towards the symbolists and Pre Raphaelites. The exhibition features over one hundred pieces including paintings, sculptures, drawings, photographs, prints, vintage newspapers and clothes from French museums and private collections. Furthermore, it will be the first show dedicated to the artist inside France.

The exhibition will run until 19th September 2021.

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