Category: Research

Upcoming Release: Scented Visions

April 10 2022

Image of Upcoming Release: Scented Visions

Picture: Penn State University Press

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here is a September release that will be worth keeping an eye out for. Scented Visions: Smells in Art 1850-1914 is the upcoming publication by Christina Bradstreet, Courses and Events Programmer at the National Gallery in London.

According to the book's blurb:

Smell loomed large in cultural discourse in the late nineteenth century, thanks to the midcentury fear of miasma, the drive for sanitation reform, and the rise in artificial perfumery. Meanwhile, the science of olfaction remained largely mysterious, prompting an impulse to “see smell” and inspiring some artists to picture scent in order to better know and control it. This book recovers the substantive role of the olfactory in Pre-Raphaelite art and Aestheticism.

Christina Bradstreet examines the iconography and symbolism of scent in nineteenth-century art and visual culture. Fragrant imagery in the work of John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Simeon Solomon, George Frederic Watts, Edward Burne-Jones, and others set the trend for the preoccupation with scent that informed swaths of British, European, and American art and design. Bradstreet’s rich analyses of paintings, perfume posters, and other works of visual culture demonstrate how artworks mirrored the “period nose” and intersected with the most clamorous debates of the day, including evolution, civilization, race, urban morality, mental health, faith, and the “woman question.”

The book will be released in September 2022.

New Edition of Jordaens Van Dyck Journal

April 7 2022

Image of New Edition of Jordaens Van Dyck Journal

Picture: JVDPPP

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The third edition of the Jordaens Van Dyck Journal has just been published online. As always, the journal is free to access online and printed editions can be ordered through the website.

Here's a list of articles featured within:

Justin Davies & Ingrid Moortgat: The punch mark VHB : possible identification as the panel maker’s mark of Hans van Beemen alias Hans van Herentals (died 1624)

Justin Davies: Evidence of a previously unknown set of Van Dyck’s Apostles in Schloss Woyanow, Danzig in the early Twentieth century and an examination of one of the panels

Andrea Seim: Planks from the same oak tree found in different paintings

Justin Davies: Art historical considerations on same tree planks found in different paintings

Joost Vander Auwera: Jacques Jordaens, his panels and panel makers: identifications and patterns

Justin Davies: Van Dyck’s Apostles: introduction, overview and a new document Johannes Edvardsson: Dendrochronological and panel mark results from the Besançon and Konstanjevica na Krki Van Dyck related Apostles

Alexis Merle Du Bourg: The provenance of the sets of contemporary panels of Van Dyck’s Apostles in Besançon and Konstanjevica na Krki

Ingrid Goddeeris: Identifying new avenues for nineteenth-century provenance research through a focus on the Belgian art dealer Léon Gauchez using online museum files and digitised journals

James Innes-Mulraine: To Land upp into the Garden there’: Van Dyck’s lost London studio found at last

In a related note, James Innes-Mulraine's appeared in The Sunday Telegraph last weekend regarding a petition to have a blue plaque placed on the site of Van Dyck's former studio in Blackfriars.

Here's what the site looked like in the past:

Picture: Trustees of the British Museum

And here is what the area looks like now:

Picture:(c) ZC Innes-Mulraine

A worthy project that AHN lends its full support to!

Upcoming Release: Imagining the Apocalypse: Art and the End Times

April 7 2022

Image of Upcoming Release: Imagining the Apocalypse: Art and the End Times

Picture: Courtauld Institute

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Courtauld Institute of Art in London will be hosting an interesting panel discussion on 27th April 2022 to celebrate the release of the following book. Imagining the Apocalypse: Art and the End Times is the latest publication by Edwin Coomasaru and Theresa Deichert.

According to a section from a brief introduction found on the Courtauld's website:

Armageddon is a cultural framework which has developed a series of conventions over centuries: the promise of rebirth after death or a saviour to turn chaos into order. Artists have long worked with and against such narrative tropes, and this book investigates the tensions between visual culture and political discourse that draw on or disrupt apocalyptic thinking. Grove complains that ‘the conceptual and temporal boundaries of apocalypses are frustrating diffuse’—but such flexibility is exactly why Armageddon has been profoundly generative as a cultural and social metaphor.53 The word ‘apocalypse’ derives from Greek, meaning ‘unveiling’, and this edited collection aims to explore and understand what modern and contemporary images of the end times may tell about the societies that gave rise to them.

The panel discussion will be live streamed (free - but registration required) for those who can't make it to the event in London.

The Burlington - Current Issue

April 5 2022

Image of The Burlington - Current Issue

Picture: The Burlington

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Burlington Magazine's April edition is dedicated to the subject of Collectors and Collections.

Here is a rundown of the articles featured within this month's edition:

The provenance of ‘Het Steen’ and ‘The rainbow landscape’ by Rubens BY LUCY DAVIS,NATALIA MUÑOZ-ROJAS

Richard Vickris Pryor in the art market of Napoleonic Europe BY LUCIA BONAZZI

From Paris to New York: French paintings from the collection of Eliza Jumel BY MARGARET OPPENHEIMER

Aby Warburg and the Volksheim exhibitions of 1902 and 1905 BY ECKART MARCHAND

Medieval and Renaissance enamels and other works of art in the Wyvern Collection BY HILTRUD WESTERMANN-ANGERHAUSEN

The Italian Renaissance altarpiece BY NICHOLAS PENNY

Obituary: Jonathan Brown (1939–2022) BY PETER CHERRY

Rembrandt, not Flinck

April 1 2022

Image of Rembrandt, not Flinck

Picture: Gemäldegalerie

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Gemäldegalerie in Berlin have announced that their Landscape with Arched Bridge is by Rembrandt after all. A reassessment of the picture, instigated by a David Hockney exhibition it seems, has concluded that the work is by Rembrandt's own hand. The picture had been given to Govaert Flinck for many years until recent technical analysis has proven otherwise.

According to the article linked above:

X-rays showing changes and corrections that had been made to the work helped confirm Rembrandt as its creator. [Berlin curator Katja] Kleinert said experts were unanimous in their verdict. 

Comparisons were made with a very similar composition by Rembrandt, called Landscape with Stone Bridge at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, which the Gemäldegalerie’s director, Dagmar Hirschfeld – herself a Rembrandt expert – said shared hallmarks typical for him. 

“You quite often get pairs of paintings, where you have the impression he is trying to do the same again, but in another style of painting or to optimise what he has already achieved,” she said. Analysis of the painting in Berlin, which the gallery acquired in 1924, showed how Rembrandt had made radical changes to the work during its creation, including shifting the position of a storm cloud, reducing the size of a hill and making changes to a group of trees. These processes in turn made the painting more compact and dense.

The landscape will be featured in the gallery's latest exhibition David Hockney – Landscapes in Dialogue.

Online Lecture: Big-Bellied Women: Portraying Pregnancy in 16th and 17th Century England

March 30 2022

Image of Online Lecture: Big-Bellied Women: Portraying Pregnancy in 16th and 17th Century England

Picture: The MET

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre in Kingston, Ontario Canada, will be hosting an interesting in-person and live-streamed lecture next month. Professor Karen Hearn will be presenting Queen's University's Isabel and Alfred Bader Lecture in European Art on the subject of Big-Bellied Women: Portraying Pregnancy in 16th and 17th-Century England.

According to the talk's blurb:

Join celebrated art historian and curator Karen Hearn for “Big-Bellied Women: Portraying Pregnancy in 16th and 17th-Century England,” an exploration of early modern depictions of pregnancy in British art. Hearn, a former curator at Tate Britain and honorary professor at University College London, argues many early modern works depicted pregnancy overtly, contrary to previous thought, for a variety of reasons and motivations.

This free talk will be streamed online on 14th April 2022 from 6pm - 8pm (EDT). Click on the link above for more details.

New Release: Bernini and His World

March 29 2022

Image of New Release: Bernini and His World

Picture: Lund Humphries

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Publisher Lund Humphries released this new book last week. Bernini and His World: Sculpture and Sculptors in Early Modern Rome is the new title written by Livio Pestilli, the former Director of Trinity College, Rome.

According to the book's blurb:

Bernini and His World is a unique exploration of Gian Lorenzo Bernini the sculptor, offering new insights and including discussions of the artist’s stylistic innovations and the ways in which he approached sculpture. Placing his life and work within a social, anthropological and historical context, Livio Pestilli gives a fascinating and in-depth account, from the Rome in which Bernini lived and its reception of foreign sculptors to the myth-making narrative of his biographers, and the judgements of his critics.

The National Gallery partners with The Frame Blog

March 14 2022

Image of The National Gallery partners with The Frame Blog


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The National Gallery in London have announced that it will be entering into a Research Partnership with The Frame Blog. The blog, which was initiated ten-years-ago by the archivist, researcher and author Lynn Roberts, covers a huge amount of material relating to frames and their related histories. The span of periods is vast, and includes interesting examples featured within fine art sales and auctions.

Recent Release: Catalogue of German, Dutch and Flemish Drawings at the Musee Bonnat-Helleu, Museum of Fine Arts Bayonne

March 10 2022

Image of Recent Release: Catalogue of German, Dutch and Flemish Drawings at the Musee Bonnat-Helleu, Museum of Fine Arts Bayonne


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Musee Bonnat-Helleu, Museum of Fine Arts Bayonne have recently released a new complete catalogue of the museum's German, Dutch and Flemish drawings. The edition is edited by David Mandrella (and collaborateurs) and features works by the likes of Dürer, Rubens, Van Dyck, Rembrandt, Jordaens, Hans Baldung Grien, Adolf von Menzel, Abraham Bloemaert, Adriaen van Ostade, Jan van Goyen and others.

The Miniature: An (Online) International Conference

March 9 2022

Image of The Miniature: An (Online) International Conference


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Centre for Renaissance and Reformation Studies are holding a three-day online conference on the subject of The Miniature. As we might expect, the conference has a wide program of speakers from institutions across the globe. Presentations will be held online between 10th and 12th March 2022 and although conference is free to attend registration is still required beforehand.

A brief sample of some of the talks that will be featured:

“‘You will offer a ship of silver’: A Brief History of Medieval Votive Ships

“Netherlandish Carved Altarpieces as Miniatures”

“Miniatures Acting Out: Narratives and Statuettes in Early Modern Germany and the Low Countries”

“The Work of the World: Rarities in Miniature”

Upcoming Release: A Revolution on Canvas

March 8 2022

Image of Upcoming Release: A Revolution on Canvas

Picture: Yale University Press

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's an upcoming summer release that might be of interest. Yale University Press will be publishing Paris A. Spies Gans's new book A Revolution on Canvas: The Rise of Women Artists in Britain and France, 1760-1830 on 28th June 2022.

According to the publisher's blurb:

In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, hundreds of women in London and Paris became professional artists, exhibiting and selling their work in unprecedented numbers. Many rose to the top of their nations’ artistic spheres and earned substantial incomes from their work, regularly navigating institutional inequalities expressly designed to exclude members of their sex. In the first collective, critical history of women artists in Britain and France during the Revolutionary era, Paris Spies-Gans explores how they engaged with and influenced the mainstream cultural currents of their societies at pivotal moments of revolutionary change.   

Through an interdisciplinary analysis of the experiences of these narrative painters, portraitists, sculptors, and draughtswomen, this book challenges longstanding assumptions about women in the history of art. Importantly, it demonstrates that women built profitable artistic careers by creating works in nearly every genre practiced by men, in similar proportions and to aesthetic acclaim. It also reveals that hundreds of women studied with male artists, and even learned to draw from the nude. Where traditional histories have left a void, this generously illustrated book illuminates a lively world of artistic production.   

Featuring an extensive range of these artists’ paintings, drawings, sculptures, and writings, alongside contemporary prints, satires, and works by their male peers, A Revolution on Canvas transforms our understanding of the opportunities and identities of women artists of the past.

Art History in Focus: London Art Week

March 8 2022

Image of Art History in Focus: London Art Week

Picture: LAW

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

London Art Week are hosting an interesting selection of free online talks between 8th March and 18th March 2022 as part of their Art History in Focus series. The lectures will be held on Zoom and are entirely free (although registration is required).

Here is a list of the talks:

8th March - Why did so many female artists in pre-modern times focus on still-lifes? (such a shame it's already happened, but let's hope a YouTube recording might be available soon!)

9th March - Donatello - Celebrating the importance of the Renaissance master in the first major exhibition in nearly 40 years

10th March - The Académie Julian in the late 19th century and its influence on women artists internationally

16th March - The Grand Tour, the two Horaces and the Court of Florence (1740-1786) at Strawberry Hill

18th March - Grace, sprezzatura and new discoveries: Parmigianino at The Courtauld

This is not Katherine Parr (ctd.)

March 4 2022

Image of This is not Katherine Parr (ctd.)

Picture: ITV

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

ITV have shared news that Hever Castle in Kent have discovered that their portrait of Katherine Parr depicts the wrong Katherine. Research has uncovered that it actually depicts King Henry VIII's first wife Katherine of Aragon and corresponds to a reidentified portrait in the NPG. Regular readers of AHN might remember that Bendor made this point no less than ten years ago on this very blog.

But of course, this story is really about promoting Hever Castle's upcoming exhibition Becoming Anne: Connections, Culture, Court which opens today and will run until November 2022.

Upcoming Release: Histories of Conservation and Art History in Modern Europe

March 3 2022

Image of Upcoming Release: Histories of Conservation and Art History in Modern Europe

Picture: Routledge

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The publishers Routledge will be releasing the following book later this month. Histories of Conservation and Art History in Modern Europe features a collection of essays edited by Sven Dupré and Jenny Boulboullé.

Here's a list of the essay titles featured within:

1 Introduction: Experts in the Interbellum

Part 1 Science, Authentication and Issues of Conservation 

2 "We Cannot Splash Light onto Our Palettes": The 1893 Munich Exhibition and Congress and Its Public Demand for Research on Painting Materials and Techniques

3 A. P. Laurie and the Scientific Appreciation of Art

4 Seeing Through the (Old) Masters: The Crisis of Connoisseurship and the Emergence of Radiographic Art Expertise  

5 Rome 1930, the International Conference on the Scientific Analysis of Artworks and Its Legacy in Italy

Part 2 Education and Professionalisation 

6 Mending, Sticking, and Repairing: Reconstructing Conservation Expertise in Archaeology in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries

7 Wissenschaft, Vocation, or Bildung?: Debating the Sites and Aims of German Art History at the End of the Nineteenth Century

8 Education in the Art and Conservation Field in German Countries

9 Experiments in a Teaching Museum: The Fogg’s "Laboratory for Art"

Part 3 Museums and Institutions 

10 Omnium Gatherum to a ‘Treasury of Art and Science’: The Development of Conservation Expertise at the Ashmolean Museum

11 The (In)visibility of the Paintings Restorers of the Rijksmuseum in the First Half of the Twentieth Century

12 Gemäldekunde. German Pioneers of the ‘Science of Painting’ 

13 Invention as Necessity: The Salvage of Italian Frescoes During World War II

14 Expertise, Multiple Actors, and Multiple Voices

The book will be released on 15th March 2022.

Recent Release: Brilliant Bodies - Fashioning Courtly Men in Early Renaissance Italy

March 3 2022

Image of Recent Release: Brilliant Bodies - Fashioning Courtly Men in Early Renaissance Italy

Picture: Penn State University Press

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's a new release that might be of interest to some readers. Penn State University Press has just published Timothy McCall's new book Brilliant Bodies: Fashioning Courtly Men in Early Renaissance Italy.

According to the book's blurb:

Italian court culture of the fifteenth century was a golden age, gleaming with dazzling princes, splendid surfaces, and luminous images that separated the lords from the (literally) lackluster masses. In Brilliant Bodies, Timothy McCall describes and interprets the Renaissance glitterati—gorgeously dressed and adorned men—to reveal how charismatic bodies, in the palazzo and the piazza, seduced audiences and materialized power.

Fifteenth-century Italian courts put men on display. Here, men were peacocks, attracting attention with scintillating brocades, shining armor, sparkling jewels, and glistening swords, spurs, and sequins. McCall’s investigation of these spectacular masculinities challenges widely held assumptions about appropriate male display and adornment. Interpreting surviving objects, visual representations in a wide range of media, and a diverse array of primary textual sources, McCall argues that Renaissance masculine dress was a political phenomenon that fashioned power and patriarchal authority. Brilliant Bodies describes and recontextualizes the technical construction and cultural meanings of attire, casts a critical eye toward the complex and entangled relations between bodies and clothing, and explores the negotiations among makers, wearers, and materials.

The Burlington Magazine - Current Issue

March 1 2022

Image of The Burlington Magazine - Current Issue

Picture: The Burlington Magazine

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Burlington Magazine's latest edition has been published both online and in their usual hardcopy format.

Here's a list of the articles featured in March's edition:

Piranesi’s ‘Catalogo delle Opere’ BY ANDREW ROBISON

Picasso’s ‘Faun musician’: revealing the making, contextualising the meaning BY KRISTI DAHM, FRANCESCA CASADIO, JEAN-LOUIS ANDRAL

Anthony van Dyck in London: newly discovered documents BY JUSTIN DAVIES, JAMES INNES-MULRAINE

Carlo Maratti’s additions to the ‘Barberini Venus’ BY GIOVAN BATTISTA FIDANZA

A pastel ‘Study for a head’ by Boltraffio in the Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Milan BY ANTONIO MAZZOTTA,AGOSTINO ALLEGRI

Dante 1321–2021

The Spanish Gallery, Bishop Auckland BY ISABELLE KENT

Obituary: Richard Kendall (1946–2021) BY JAMES A. GANZ

Obituary: John White (1924–2021) BY JULIAN GARDNER

New Release: Fragonard's Progress of Love

February 9 2022

Image of New Release: Fragonard's Progress of Love

Picture: The Frick Collection

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Frick Collection in New York have recently published a new book focusing on Fragonard's Progress of Love series. This publication was written by Alan Hollinghurst and Xavier F. Salomon.

According to the book's short blurb:

This latest volume in the Frick Diptych series focuses on Fragonard’s Progress of Love ensemble, a jewel in the crown of the Frick’s collection. An illuminating essay by Xavier F. Salomon, Deputy Director and Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator, is paired with a lyrical piece by the Man Booker Prize–winning author Alan Hollinghurst.  

Designed to foster critical engagement and interest specialist and non-specialist alike, each book in this series illuminates a single work in the Frick’s rich collection with an essay by a Frick curator paired with a contribution from a contemporary artist or writer.

Recent Release: Scottish Portraiture 1644-1714

February 4 2022

Image of Recent Release: Scottish Portraiture 1644-1714


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Brepols have recently published an enormous two-volume scholarly work entitled Scottish Portraiture 1644-1714: David and John Scougall and Their Contemporaries by Carla van de Puttelaar. The publication seems like a must-have for serious art libraries.

According to the book's blurb:

This book is the first comprehensive publication on Scottish portraiture from the period 1644 to 1714, with an emphasis on the painters David Scougall (1625-1685), and his son John Scougall (1657-1737). It is based on in-depth art historical and archival research. As such, it is an important academic contribution to this thus far little-researched field. Virtually nothing was known about the Scougall portraitists, who also include the somewhat obscure George Scougall (active c. 1690-1737). Thorough archival research has provided substantial biographical information. It has yielded life dates and data on family relations and, also, it has become clear that David Scougall had two parallel careers, as a portrait painter and as a writer (solicitor). The legal community in which the Scougalls were embedded has been defined, as well as an extended group of sitters and their social, economic, and family networks. The book includes a catalogue raisonné of the oeuvre of David Scougall. 

The most important contemporaries of the Scougalls were the portraitist L. Schüneman (active c. 1655/60-1667 or slightly later), his successor James Carrudus (active c. 1668-1683 or later), whose work is identified for the first time in this book, David Paton (c. 1650-in or after 1708), Jacob Jacobsz. de Wet (1641/42-1697) and Sir John Baptist Medina (1659-1710). Their lives and work are discussed. An extensive survey of Scottish portraits, with an emphasis on the work of the Scougall painters, is presented for the period 1644 to 1714. Numerous attributions to various artists and sitter identifications have been established or revised. An overview of the next generation is provided, in which the oeuvres and biographical details are highlighted of the principal portrait painters, such as William Aikman (1682-1731), Richard Waitt (1684-1733) and John Alexander (1686-1767). Countless paintings have been photographed anew or for the first time, and have been compared in detail, which had hardly been done before, while information is also included on technical aspects and (original) frames. The resulting data have been complemented by analysing the social and (art-) historical context in which the portraits were made. The works of the portrait painters in Scotland from this period, as this book shows, now form a solid bridge between the portraits painted prior to George Jamesone’s death in 1644, and those by the renowned Scottish painters of the eighteenth century.

As is the ancient custom, due to the fact this publication contains a catalogue raisonné of the oeuvre of David Scougall, Carla van de Puttelaar has earned a place in the much coveted Heroes of Art History section of this blog.

Burlington Magazine - February Edition

February 4 2022

Image of Burlington Magazine - February Edition

Picture: Burlington Magazine

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

As usual, this month's edition of the Burlington Magazine is filled with many interesting pieces of exciting research.

Here is a list of the articles in February's edition:

Margaret van Eyck, a house called ‘The Wild Sea’ and Jan van Eyck’s posthumous workshop BY JAN DUMOLYN, SUSAN JONES, WARD LELOUP, TOON DE MEESTER, MATHIJS SPEECKE

The ‘Weston Altarpiece’ in the Museum of the Order of St John, Clerkenwell BY RICHARD WEST

‘The crucifixion of St Peter’: Gerard Seghers, Michelangelo and Caravaggio BY ANNE DELVINGT

Christian VII of Denmark’s lost British portraits BY SARA AYRES

The Art of Conservation: XVII: Jan Cornelis Traas, paintings restorer of the Van Gogh family collection BY ELLA HENDRIKS

Colossal orders and a Classical facade: Hoefnagel and Nonsuch revisited BY MARTIN BIDDLE

Christian Theuerkauff (1936–2021) BY MARJORIE TRUSTED

The finding of the infant Bacchus BY LARS HENDRIKMAN

Examining Watts's Lady Dalrymple

February 4 2022

Image of Examining Watts's Lady Dalrymple

Picture: @WattsGallery

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Watts Gallery in Compton, Surrey, have published an interesting blog regarding the recent technical examination of GF Watts's Lady Sophia Dalrymple. The work has been scanned and analysed before it heads off to the RA's Whistler exhibition set to open later this month.

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