Category: Research

2020 Release: Stuart Style

September 23 2021

Image of 2020 Release: Stuart Style

Picture: Yale Books

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

I hope you can forgive me, here is a rather fascinating release from last year that I missed. Stuart Style Monarchy, Dress and the Scottish Male Elite by Maria Hayward was published last year by Yale Books.

According to the blurb:

This is the first detailed analysis of elite men’s clothing in 17th-century Scotland and its influence on English male fashion. Focusing on the years 1566 through 1701, it centers on the clothing choices of five Stuart royals: James VI and I, Prince Henry, Charles I, Charles II, and James VII and II.   

The engaging text brims with details about the wardrobes and habits of Scottish royalty, such as how the men selected fabric and kept clothes clean. The book is organized along three themes: the significance of the Stuarts’ Scottish heritage in the style they developed; the role of Scots in exporting their style to London and beyond; and the reception of Stuart style among the male elite in Scotland. Maria Hayward explores how Stuart style was displayed in sport, at political and social events, and at church. The book also reveals the importance of vital supporting players—namely, the courtiers who helped kings and princes develop their style, as well as the tailors who disseminated it to men beyond the royal court.

Armenian Portraits Rehung at Windsor Castle

September 23 2021

Image of Armenian Portraits Rehung at Windsor Castle

Picture: RCT

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Royal Collection Trust have shared news that two recently conserved portraits by 17th-century Armenian artist Marcos have been rehung in the King's Dining Room at Windsor Castle. The portraits were last recorded as hanging there during the 1870s.

According to the post:

The striking portraits depict a member of the military aristocracy and an unmarried woman from New Julfa, the Armenian district of Isfahan, which was the cosmopolitan capital of Persia in the 17th century. Paintings of this  style are known to have hung in the houses of Isfahan’s wealthy merchant classes.

The figures are dressed in luxurious fabrics including Persian silks, which the Armenians of Isfahan famously traded across the globe. Both portraits include European details, such as a Venetian wine glass, a German clock and Dutch flowers, signifying affluence through access to luxury international commodities. 

New Release: The Drawings of Peter Paul Rubens, A Critical Catalogue, Volume One (1590–1608)

September 9 2021

Image of New Release: The Drawings of Peter Paul Rubens, A Critical Catalogue, Volume One (1590–1608)


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Brepols have recently released the first volume of a new catalogue raisonné of drawings by Rubens. The Drawings of Peter Paul Rubens, A Critical Catalogue, Volume One (1590–1608) was edited by the scholars Anne-Marie Logan and Kristin Lohse Belkin.

According to the blurb:

This is Volume I of the three-volume catalogue raisonné of all drawings considered by the authors to be by Rubens. It covers the years 1590–1608, Volumes II and III dealing, respectively, with the periods 1609–20 and 1621–40.

It is the first publication that presents the artist’s entire drawn oeuvre in chronological order, previous such publications containing only selections of drawings. By leafing through the illustrations, this arrangement provides the user with a quick visual impression of the variety of techniques, media, subject and functions of Rubens’s drawings at an one time. 

Volume I consists of the drawings of the artist’s childhood, apprenticeship and first years as a master in Antwerp to his formative years in Italy, spent mostly in Mantua and Rome, with an excursion to Spain.

These are the years primarily devoted to learning and absorbing the art of the past, from sixteenth-century German and Netherlandish prints to the works of the ancient and Italian Renaissance masters. A large number of these drawings consists of copies after the works of other artists, largely executed as part of the artistic training at the time.

Michelangelo's Shoes Suggest Artist was Short

September 7 2021

Image of Michelangelo's Shoes Suggest Artist was Short


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's a curious story that appeared in the press a few days ago.

A group of scientists from the Forensic Anthropology, Paleopathology and Bioarchaeology Research Center (FAPAB) in Avola, Italy, have been studying a set of shoes allegedly owned by Michelangelo surviving in Florence's Casa Buonarroti Museum. Using some clever analysis, the group has estimated that Michelangelo's must have been no taller than 5 feet 2 inches (1.6 meters).

According to the article:

While this is relatively short for a European adult man by today's standards, at the time Michelangelo was alive (1475 to 1564) that height would not have been unusual, said scientists with the Forensic Anthropology, Paleopathology and Bioarchaeology Research Center (FAPAB) in Avola, Italy. 

FAPAB researchers Francesco Galassi, a paleopathologist, and Elena Varotto, a forensic anthropologist, measured the shoes and then calculated the wearer's foot dimensions and height, and their results aligned with a description of Michelangelo by the 16th-century artist and writer Giorgio Vasari. Vasari wrote that Michelangelo was "broad in the shoulders" but the rest of his body was "somewhat slender in proportion" and his stature was average, according to the study.

Burlington Article Reveals Jacques-Louis David Secrets

September 6 2021

Image of Burlington Article Reveals Jacques-Louis David Secrets

Picture: MET

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

September's edition of The Burlington Magazine contains a fascinating article on recent discoveries made on Jacques-Louis David's 1788 Portrait of Antoine Laurent Lavoisier (1743–1794) and Marie- Anne Lavoisier (Marie-Anne Pierrette Paulze, 1758– 1836). This study was undertaken by staff at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Vast technical analysis has shown the many changes were undertaken during its early history. This included the removal of a fancy hat, now missing of course, and the fact that their scientific instruments were a later addition. It is believed that these alterations were made to try and distance the sitters from looking too much like tax-collectors, a profession which ultimately led Lavoisier to the guillotine in 1794.

New Release: He Ringatoi o Ngā Tūpuna

August 30 2021

Image of New Release: He Ringatoi o Ngā Tūpuna


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's an interesting new release from New Zealand focusing on colonial portraits made by the British artist Isaac Coates between 1841 - 1845. He Ringatoi o Nga Tupuna: Isaac Coates and his Maori Portraits has been written by the Nelson historians John and Hilary Mitchell.

According to the book's blurb:

Isaac Coates was an Englishman who lived in Wellington and Nelson between 1841 and 1845. During that time he painted watercolour portraits of 58 Māori from Nelson, Marlborough, Wellington, Waikanae and Kāpiti. Some of these portraits have been well-known for nearly 180 years, although their creator was not definitively identified until 2000. The discovery in 2007 of a Coates book of portraits in the Pitt Rivers Museum at Oxford University added many previously unknown images to his body of work. 

The portraits depict Māori men and women from chiefly whakapapa, as well as commoners and at least one slave. Coates’s meticulous records of each subject’s name, iwi and place of residence are invaluable, and his paintings are strong images of individuals, unlike the more stereotyped work of some of Coates’s contemporaries. Whānau, hapū and iwi treasure Coates’s works because they are the only images of some tūpuna, and they are reminders of those who risked their lives to bring their people to a better life in the Cook Strait regions of Kapiti coast, Wellington, Nelson and Marlborough.

Lecture: The Fate of Icons in University Museums

August 24 2021

Image of Lecture: The Fate of Icons in University Museums

Picture: @greeceinuk

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge is hosting an interesting sounding online lecture in October entitled "Fair Greece! Sad Relic": the fate of icons in University Museums. The event has been organised to mark the Bicentenary of the Greek War of Independence.

According to the blurb:

Soon after the Greek Revolution, the Acropolis was cleared of its Medieval buildings. Byzantine icons too were shunned, even in University Museum collections. This lecture touches on icons in the Fitzwilliam but focuses on the fate of one icon in the Yale University Art Museum, acquired in 1871, but hidden in its storeroom until now.

The talk will be delivered by Robin Cormack, Professor emeritus in the History of Art at the Courtauld Institute of Art and who now teaches in the Classics Faculty at Cambridge. 

The lecture will be broadcast on 13th October 2021 and attendance will cost £5 (free for under-18s and students).

Lecture: Moving Magnificence

August 23 2021

Image of Lecture: Moving Magnificence

Picture: ICON

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

For those interested in the logistical side of things, then this is a lecture for you! The Institute of Conservation (ICON) are hosting a lecture on 30th September 2021 entitled Moving Magnificence: An Introduction to Packing and Transporting Art in Centuries Past.

According to the talk's blurb:

This talk gives an overview of the how and why art travelled, from the 13th to the 20th centuries; paintings, textiles, as well as smaller items. 

It looks at, not just at the basic reasons why it travelled within historical contexts, but also the problems and solutions inherent in the size of objects on the move, the personnel that did the actual wrapping and packing of the art, the methods of wrapping and packing themselves and the logistics given the politics at certain periods in history. It also looks at insurance in a historical context, as well as the state of the roads over which the art was in transit. The use of primary sources moves the subject from myth to reality.

The lecture will be broadcast at 7pm (BST) and will cost £6 for non-members.

Short Course: Medieval Fashion 1200 - 1500

August 19 2021

Image of Short Course: Medieval Fashion 1200 - 1500

Picture: University of Glasgow

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Since the Histories of Fashion and Art make for a rather good pair, I thought some readers might be interesting in this 10 week course which starts next month. The University of Glasgow are putting on a short course on the subject of Medieval Fashion 1200 - 1500.

According to the blurb:

Dress in Medieval society functioned as symbols of status and circumstance: from indicating economic levels (e.g. receivers of alms), marriage status of women, to social class at birth. People were conditioned to decode the complex signage system in dress, beyond and above our contemporary 'reading' of fashion. This course offers the opportunity to explore fashion during the High to Late Middle Ages (1200-1500) through investigating period art, literature and surviving textiles, and develop to an understanding of the meaning of high- status clothing. In this class we will do practical exercises, visual investigations, discussions, and where available, field visits.

This online course, which runs on Thursday Evenings, will begin on 23rd September 2021 and will cost £140 to attend. It seems that you don't need to be a student at the University to be able to attend.

Dutch Paintings in the Musée Jeanne d’Aboville

August 19 2021

Image of Dutch Paintings in the Musée Jeanne d’Aboville

Picture: Musée Jeanne d’Aboville

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Éléonore Dérisson, Collections Manager at Fondation des Artistes in Paris, has penned the latest CODARTfeatures on Dutch paintings in the Musée Jeanne d’Aboville in La Fère. The article, and high-quality images found within, was made possible due to the museum's recent conservation digitising initiatives.

Upcoming Release: The Art of Doris and Anna Zinkeisen

August 18 2021

Image of Upcoming Release: The Art of Doris and Anna Zinkeisen

Picture: Unicorn Publishing Group

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Unicorn will be publishing Philip Kelleway, Emma Roodhouse and Nicola Evans's new book on The Art of Doris and Anna Zinkeisen later in September.

According to the book's blurb:

This lavishly illustrated book celebrates the life of Doris and Anna Zinkeisen, charting the rise of the sisters from a childhood in Scotland, to their emergence as amongst the most eminent artists of their day in London, to a quieter yet still highly productive life during their twilight years in rural Suffolk. During the golden age from the 1920s through to the 1950s, the Zinkeisen sisters enjoyed a huge success and won numerous accolades. 

Their paintings and design work, including posters, murals and luxury ocean liners, and costume designs for stage and film, are today emblematic of that period in British art.

Upcoming Release: Emotions, Art, and Christianity in the Transatlantic World

August 13 2021

Image of Upcoming Release: Emotions, Art, and Christianity in the Transatlantic World

Picture: Brill Studies on Art

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Brill Studies on Art will be publishing a new title later this month entitled Emotions, Art, and Christianity in the Transatlantic World, 1450–1800. The collection is edited by Heather Graham and Lauren Kilroy-Ewbank.

According to the book's blurb:

Emotions, Art, and Christianity in the Transatlantic World, 1450–1800 is a collection of studies variously exploring the role of visual and material culture in shaping early modern emotional experiences. The volume’s transatlantic framework moves from The Netherlands, Spain, and Italy to Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, and the Philippines, and centers on visual culture as a means to explore how emotions differ in their local and global “contexts” amidst the many shifts occurring c. 1450–1800. These themes are examined through the lens of art informed by religious ideas, especially Catholicism, with each essay probing how religiously inflected art stimulated, molded, and encoded emotions.

Mapping the Provenance of a Vermeer

August 13 2021

Image of Mapping the Provenance of a Vermeer

Picture: The Frick Collection

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Frick Collection have published a short blog on a map which charts the provenance of Vermeer's Mistress and Maid. They've managed to work out that the painting had travelled at least 8,300 miles during its lifetime.

The British Art Network's New Website

August 12 2021

Image of The British Art Network's New Website


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The British Art Network, managed by staff at the Paul Mellon Centre and Tate, have launched a brand-new website. This online resource looks to be a must for anyone wanting to share their research on British Art within academic and professional spheres. The 'current research groups' seem to represent several themes that have become rather popular in recent times amongst scholars within the discipline.

Upcoming Release: Everyday Rococo

August 11 2021

Image of Upcoming Release: Everyday Rococo

Picture: Unicorn Press

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's an upcoming release that might be of interest. Dame Rosalind Savill's new book Everyday Rococo: Madame de Pompadour & Sèvres Porcelain will be published by Unicorn Press later in October. To celebrate, the French Porcelain Society will be holding a what will surely be a fascinating two-day symposium on the subject at The Wallace Collection in December.

Recent Release: Polish XVI Century Portraits

August 9 2021

Image of Recent Release: Polish XVI Century Portraits


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Professor Przemysław Mrozowski, a director of the Royal Castle in Warsaw, has recently published a new book on Portraits in Sixteenth Century Poland. The publication focuses on placing early Polish portraits within its European context, alongside catalogue notes of significant examples of the period.

NAL Survey

July 30 2021

Image of NAL Survey

Picture: V&A

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The National Art Library (NAL) at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London has published a survey giving readers a chance to have their say regarding future services. As highlighted previously on this blog, the NAL is of enormous importance to art researchers in both academia and the art market. Let's hope their voices are heard!

JVDPPP Journal Online!

July 30 2021

Image of JVDPPP Journal Online!

Picture: JVDPPP

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Jordaens Van Dyck Panels Painting Project (JVDPPP) has finally uploaded their new Journal online! This online journal is open access with print-on-demand copies available too.

There's a wealth of information and new research to comb through. Congratulations to the JVDPPP team for this very fine publication!

Frans Hals: The Male Portrait

July 29 2021

Image of Frans Hals: The Male Portrait

Picture: Bloomsbury

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Although the Wallace Collection's upcoming exhibition Frans Hals The Male Portrait opens on 22nd September 2021, Bloomsbury have already made their accompanying book available for pre-order. The publication is the work of Lelia Packer and Ashok Roy.

According to the book's blurb:

Frans Hals is one of the greatest portrait painters of all time and, together with Rembrandt, is one of the most eminent seventeenth-century Dutch artists. Published to coincide with the Wallace Collection's exhibition of the same name, Frans Hals: The Male Portrait explores the artist's highly innovative approach to male portraiture, from the beginning of his career in the 1610s until the end of his life in 1666. 

Through pose, expression and virtuosic painterly technique, Hals revolutionised the male portrait into something entirely new and fresh, capturing and revealing his sitters' characters like no one else before him. This book includes the first in-depth study of Hals's great masterpiece, The Laughing Cavalier, from 1624. The extravagantly dressed young man, confidently posed with his left arm akimbo in the extreme foreground of the picture and seemingly penetrating into the viewer's space, has been charming audiences for over a century. 

Richly illustrated, Frans Hals: The Male Portrait situates The Laughing Cavalier within the artist's larger oeuvre and demonstrates how, at a relatively early point in his career, Hals was able to achieve this great masterpiece.

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.

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