Category: Research

Giotto's Frescos Scanned

April 16 2021

Image of Giotto's Frescos Scanned


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Giotto's frescos in the The Scrovegni Chapel, Padua, have been scanned by the art imaging company Haltadefinizione. Fourteen thousand shots were made of 700 square metres of the interiors, allowing viewers to digitally fly through this building with incredible zooming capabilities. Furthermore, this resource is completely free to use via. their website.

Conference: Dressing a Picture

April 15 2021

Image of Conference: Dressing a Picture


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Examining the fashion found in old master paintings has been a very popular trend in both the academic and art market spheres over the past decade or so. Who can't help but be seduced by the extravagant laces and textiles found in so many portraits of the early modern period.

If this interests you too, then The University of Cambridge are hosting what looks to be the history of dress conferences to end all history of dress conferences later in May.

Dressing a Picture: Reimagining the Court Portrait 1500 – 1800 is a virtual conference that will take place between 6th - 7th May 2021. This two-day event will feature no fewer than eighteen different presentations on subjects ranging from clothing in Cranachs to the White Ruffs and Red Cuffs in Van Dyck's Genoese portraits.

What's even better about these events are the fact that they are entirely free to attend!

New Release: Rubens's Spirit

April 14 2021

Image of New Release: Rubens's Spirit


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Alexander Marr, reader in the History of Early Modern Art at the University of Cambridge, has a new book out this month entitled Rubens's Spirit, from Ingenuity to Genius.

According the book's blurb:

Peter Paul Rubens was the most inventive and prolific northern European artist of his age. This book discusses his life and work in relation to three interrelated themes: spirit, ingenuity and genius. It argues that Rubens and his reception were pivotal in the transformation of early modern ingenuity into Romantic genius. Ranging across the artist’s entire career, it explores Rubens’s engagement with these themes in his art and biography. The book looks at Rubens’s forays into altarpiece painting in Italy as well as his collaborations with fellow artists in his hometown of Antwerp, and his complex relationship with the spirit of pleasure. It concludes with his late landscapes in connection to genius loci, the spirit of the place.

New Release: Mattia Preti, Life and Works

April 11 2021

Image of New Release: Mattia Preti, Life and Works


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Professor Keith Sciberras of the University of Malta, and writer on all things regarding the Baroque in Malta, has a new book out entitled Mattia Preti, Life and Works.

The volume also includes a full catalogue of the artist's works, which will earn Prof. Sciberras a place amongst the highly coveted Heroes of Art History section of this blog.

The title is available for pre-order through the publisher.

Looking Under Paintings with AI

April 8 2021

Video: Oxia Palus

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's the latest collaboration between tech wizards and the art world. The art collective called Oxia Palus has been using AI to recreate paintings found underneath artworks. In this case, they've used scans of Picasso's The Crouching Beggar to digitally recreate an overpainted work that was discovered in 2018. It's believed that the painting underneath Picasso's is by Santiago Rusiñol, a modernist landscape painter and friend of the artist.

According to the article above:

The Oxia Palus team used a combination of spectroscopic imaging, AI, and 3D printing to actualize the visible trace of the landscape. They call the method “the neomastic process.”

The company has gone so far as re-printing 100 copies of the AI interpretation of the lost painting for sale.

Unidentified Portraits Corpus Rubenianum

April 5 2021

Image of Unidentified Portraits Corpus Rubenianum

Picture: @VeroVdK

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Exciting news from Véronique Van de Kerckhof (@VeroVdK) on Twitter of another upcoming new volume from the Corpus Rubenianum. Part XIX will be dedicated to Unidentified Portraits and previously unidentified sitters that have now been identified by further research. It seems likely that this volume will be available later this Spring.

New Release: Baroque Painting in Valencia

March 30 2021

Image of New Release: Baroque Painting in Valencia


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

For those passionate about Spanish Art, this new publication on Baroque Painting in Valencia (1600-1737) seems like a must-have. This 496 page volume is the work of Víctor Marco García doctor of art history at the Universidad de Alcalá, and covers the main artists and sources of influence for the creation of paintings in this city during the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries.

Bravura: Virtuosity and Ambition in Early Modern European Painting

March 30 2021

Image of Bravura: Virtuosity and Ambition in Early Modern European Painting


Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Here's an interesting book release that I missed last month. Bravura: Virtuosity and Ambition in Early Modern European Painting is a new publication from Princeton University Press by Nicola Suthor.

As the book's blurb explains:

The painterly style known as bravura emerged in sixteenth-century Venice and spread throughout Europe during the seventeenth century. While earlier artistic movements presented a polished image of the artist by downplaying the creative process, bravura celebrated a painter’s distinct materials, virtuosic execution, and theatrical showmanship. This resulted in the further development of innovative techniques and a popular understanding of the artist as a weapon-wielding acrobat, impetuous wunderkind, and daring rebel. In Bravura, Nicola Suthor offers the first in-depth consideration of bravura as an artistic and cultural phenomenon. Through history, etymology, and in-depth analysis of works by such important painters as Franҫois Boucher, Caravaggio, Francisco Goya, Frans Hals, Peter Paul Rubens, Tintoretto, and Diego Velázquez, Suthor explores the key elements defining bravura’s richness and power.

Suthor delves into how bravura’s unique and groundbreaking methods—visible brushstrokes, sharp chiaroscuro, severe foreshortening of the body, and other forms of visual emphasis—cause viewers to feel intensely the artist’s touch. Examining bravura’s etymological history, she traces the term’s associations with courage, boldness, spontaneity, imperiousness, and arrogance, as well as its links to fencing, swordsmanship, henchmen, mercenaries, and street thugs. Suthor discusses the personality cult of the transgressive, self-taught, antisocial genius, and the ways in which bravura artists, through their stunning displays of skill, sought applause and admiration.

New Release: Visions of Heaven - Dante and the Divine Light

March 24 2021

Image of New Release: Visions of Heaven - Dante and the Divine Light

Picture: Lund Humphries

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Oxford University art historian and Leonardo scholar Professor Martin Kemp has a new book out entitled Visions of Heaven: Dante and the Art of Divine Light.

To provide a short blurb:

Publishing on 25 March, to coincide with International Dante Day and the 700th anniversary of Dante’s death, Martin Kemp's major new study is the first book to consider the impact of Dante’s vision of divine light on visual artists of the Renaissance and Baroque. It combines a close reading of Dante’s poetry with analysis of early optics and is lavishly illustrated with masterworks by Giotto, Fra Angelico, Piero della Francesco, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, Bernini and others. It also looks at what the rival media of poetry and painting can do.

In case you'd like to know more, Lund Humphries are running a free online conversation tomorrow with Kemp and Alessandra Buccheri, Professor of Art History at Accademia di Belle Arti di Palermo, and Simon Gilson, Professor of Italian Studies at Magdalen College, Oxford. The panel discussion will be broadcast on 25th March 2021 at 5pm (GMT).

New Louvre Collections Website

March 24 2021

Image of New Louvre Collections Website

Picture: Louvre

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Louvre in Paris have launched a new collections website. At a glance, the website seems very easy to use with all the usual functions required to make advanced searches. The images available are also rather good quality, although they don't allow in-depth zoom capabilities like some museums are now offering.

The website also explains that the re-use guidelines for educational purposes are also rather generous.

Colección Banco de España

March 23 2021

Image of Colección Banco de España

Picture: Colección Banco de España

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

I've spotted on Twitter (via. @cultura_hola) that Banco de España have digitised their art collection. The bank's collection of paintings is rather interesting, and filled with impressive works by many Spanish Old Masters. Equally impressive is the quality of images they have uploaded, which makes the experience even more enjoyable.

Thomas Lawrence: Coming of Age - Panel Discussion

March 23 2021

Image of Thomas Lawrence: Coming of Age - Panel Discussion

Picture: Bloomsbury

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

A reader has kindly alerted me to this fascinating sounding panel discussion on the youthful works of Thomas Lawrence (1769-1830). More specifically, the panel will focus around author Amina Wright's new book on the artist (pictured). Other panellists include dealers Lowell Libson (Lowell Libson & Jonny Yarker Ltd) and Ben Elwes (Ben Elwes Fine Art). The discussion will be moderated by the television art historian Andrew Graham-Dixon.

The discussion will be broadcast on Zoom on 25th March 2021 at 5pm (GMT). It's completely free to attend but registration is required.

Is this by Raphael?

March 22 2021

Image of Is this by Raphael?

Picture: Accademia Nazionale di San Luca

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Accademia Nazionale di San Luca in Italy are about to undertake an interesting project to determine the authorship of the fresco fragment above. It has long borne a traditional attribution to Raphael, but this new project will attempt to determine this more conclusively with conservation and scientific analysis. One of the sticking points is that it had belonged to the neoclassical painter Jean-Baptiste Wicar (1762-1834), who may well have passed off a copy as an original.

RKD Uploads Dulwich Picture Gallery Catalogues

March 22 2021

Image of RKD Uploads Dulwich Picture Gallery Catalogues

Picture: Dulwich Picture Gallery

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

A reader has pointed out to me that the RKD (Netherlands Institute for Art History) have uploaded Part One & Part Two of the catalogues of Dutch and Flemish Paintings from the Dulwich Picture Gallery in London. The catalogues are completely free to access and will be of great benefit for anyone wanting to know more about this significant part of the gallery's collection.

New Release: Painting, Science, and the Perception of Coloured Shadows

March 18 2021

Image of New Release: Painting, Science, and the Perception of Coloured Shadows

Picture: Routledge

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

Routledge have announced their new release entitled Painting, Science, and the Perception of Coloured Shadows by the University of Warwick art historian Paul Smith.

As the book's blurb explains:

Many artists and scientists – including Buffon, Goethe, and Philipp Otto Runge – who observed the vividly coloured shadows that appear outdoors around dawn and dusk, or indoors when a candle burns under waning daylight, chose to describe their colours as ‘beautiful’.  Paul Smith explains what makes these ephemeral effects worthy of such appreciation – or how depictions of coloured shadows have genuine aesthetic and epistemological significance.

This multidisciplinary book synthesises methodologies drawn from art history (close pictorial analysis), psychology and neuroscience (theories of colour constancy), history of science (the changing paradigms used to explain coloured shadows), and philosophy (theories of perception and aesthetic value drawn from Wittgenstein and Merleau-Ponty). 

This title will be of interest to scholars in art history, art theory, and the history of science and technology.

William Hogarth Lecture Series at PMC

March 16 2021

Image of William Hogarth Lecture Series at PMC

Picture: Sir John Soane's Museum

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art have announced a new public lecture course on the eighteenth century artist William Hogarth. Consisting of seven online lectures, the series will focus on some of Hogarth's key works including The Rake's Progress (pictured). The three lecturers who will lead the presentations are Mark Hallett (Director of Studies, Paul Mellon Centre), Meredith Gamer (Assistant Professor, Columbia University), and Elizabeth Robles (Lecturer, University of Bristol).

This free course, which requires no previous knowledge of British Art, will run from 8th April - 13th May 2021.

Yale University are Looking for a Works on Paper Fellow

March 15 2021

Image of Yale University are Looking for a Works on Paper Fellow

Picture: Yale University

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Yale University Art Gallery are looking for a new Florence B. Selden Fellow, a position which will be based in the department of Prints and Drawings.

According to the job description:

Reporting to the Curators of Prints and Drawings at the Yale University Art Gallery, the Florence B. Selden Fellow will supervise the department’s active study room and act as the primary liaison between the department and faculty teaching from the collections of works on paper. The Selden Fellow will prepare and follow through to publication the annual list of the department’s acquisitions on the Gallery’s website, conduct scholarly research to catalogue new acquisitions, answer queries about the collection, and interact with scholars, students, and the public on matters concerning the collection. The Selden Fellow will have the opportunity to propose acquisitions, conduct independent research, and assist with special exhibitions and permanent gallery installations. We welcome and encourage applications from individuals of all backgrounds interested in working in the prints and drawings curatorial field.

The one year position will come with a salary between $40,000 - $45,000 and applications must be in by 2nd April 2021.

Good luck if you're applying!

Lecture Series on Frederico Zeri's Museums

March 12 2021

Image of Lecture Series on Frederico Zeri's Museums

Picture: Fondazione Zeri

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Fondazione Zeri are hosting another very interesting set of free online lectures dedicated to collections of Italian paintings which had previously been edited by the Italian art historian Frederico Zeri (1921-1998). Collections featured within the series include the Galleria Spada in Rome, The Baltimore Museum of Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Mason Perkins Collection of Assisi, the Saibene Collection in Milan, The Gallery of the Palazzo Cini in Venice and the Pallavicini Gallery in Rome.

This lecture series, broadcast in Italian between March and May, are free to join on Zoom and on Facebook.

Rubens: Reuniting the Great Landscapes

March 9 2021

Image of Rubens: Reuniting the Great Landscapes

Picture: The Wallace Collection

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

The Wallace Collection's Spring / Summer exhibition, which will see the reuniting of Rubens's two great landscapes, is shaping up to be one of the most exciting moments in the London art calendar for 2021. This will be the first time in two hundred years that the paintings will be hung next to one another, as they were originally intended in the artist's house in Het Steen. Indeed, this was only made possible due to the Wallace Collection's trustees recent overruling of Lady Wallace's 1897 bequest which specifically stopped the collection giving or receiving loans.

The dates of the exhibition haven't been announced on the museum's website yet, but it's likely that it will be opened once the UK comes out of the next stage of lockdown on 17th May 2021.

Furthermore, the museum have also released details of a very exciting two day online conference on 17th & 18th May 2021 which will dwell on many aspects to do with the paintings' various contexts and conservation histories. Speakers will include experts from Antwerp, the MET, The Kunsthistoriches Museum, the State Academy in Stuttgart, the Hamilton Kerr Institute and the National Gallery of course.

Women Artists in Early Modern Bologna

March 8 2021

Image of Women Artists in Early Modern Bologna

Picture: Penn State University Press

Posted by Adam Busiakiewicz:

A new book entitled Women Artists, Their Patrons, and Their Publics in Early Modern Bologna is being published by Penn State University Press this month. It is written by Bette Bohn, Professor of Art History and Affiliate Faculty in Women and Gender Studies at Texas Christian University.

As the book's blurb explains:

This groundbreaking book seeks to explain why women artists were far more numerous, diverse, and successful in early modern Bologna than elsewhere in Italy. They worked as painters, sculptors, printmakers, and embroiderers; many obtained public commissions and expanded beyond the portrait subjects to which women were traditionally confined. Babette Bohn asks why that was the case in this particular place and at this particular time. 

Drawing on extensive archival research, Bohn investigates an astonishing sixty-eight women artists, including Elisabetta Sirani and Lavinia Fontana. The book identifies and explores the factors that facilitated their success, including local biographers who celebrated women artists in new ways, an unusually diverse system of artistic patronage that included citizens from all classes, the impact of Bologna’s venerable university, an abundance of women writers, and the frequency of self-portraits and signed paintings by many women artists. In tracing the evolution of Bologna’s female artists from nun-painters to working professionals, Bohn proposes new attributions and interpretations of their works, some of which are reproduced here for the first time.

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