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At The Met, A Most Timely Acquisition

Maybe I should not admit this, but I never heard of Luisa Ignacia Roldán until a few weeks ago, when I learned that the Metropolitan Museum of Art* had recently purchased a polychrome terracotta sculpture by her. Dated 1700-1701, The Entombment of Christ takes up a very common theme in Spanish art of the period. Her interpretation adds […]

Merry Christmas: This Year’s Nativity Scene

By tradition, every year about this time I post a nativity scene here, for your enjoyment and contemplation while I am away with family for Christmas. There’s no shortage of possible choices. This year, reminded and inspired by my review of the Giovanni di Paolo exhibition at the Getty, I’ve chosen one by the artist […]

Happy Thanksgiving

There’s a painting for everything, and while some people conjure up Norman Rockwell on Thanksgiving, I lead toward the Dutch masters, like Jan Davidsz de Heem. Below is his Still-Life with Flowers and Fruit from the 1660s. I hope you are enjoying family, friends and an even better feast today. I’ll be away for the next […]

Kenneth Clark’s Response to Crisis

During World War II, in London’s bleak days, Kenneth Clark acted, as the review of his biography by James Stourton in today’s New York Times reminds us. Clark recognized that in dark times there is a yearning for serious art, music and literature. Many people now feel that we as a nation are going through […]

Picture This! Scenes From Tefaf-New York

I spent most of Friday afternoon and evening at Tefaf-New York, and I found it to be as full of interesting paintings and objects as I expected. Here are pictures of some interesting booths–there were so many. When I remember where I was, I’ve added a few details. Richard L. Feigen’s booth–with a wonderful Courbet […]

A Master, A Mysterious Girl and An Unsolved Question

When I traveled to Berlin earlier this summer, I spent about four and half hours at the Gemaldegalerie (not enough time)–a full hour of which was spent looking at Portrait of a Young Girl (1470) by Petrus Christus. It’s the subject of the “Masterpiece” column I wrote for The Wall Street Journal, and was published […]

I’m Back…With A Masterpiece

Europe beckoned–that is where I have been. Not to the art sales in London, but rather to Berlin and then to Bulgaria for a week. I saw a lot of art–fantastic art in Berlin, of course, and some interesting things in Bulgaria. I’ll share some of that here in the future. But while I was […]

Happy Birthday, and What That Means

One hundred years ago, the last emperor of China abdicated; the Saturday Evening Post published its first Norman Rockwell cover; war raged in Europe and the Near East; Gregory Peck was born; and the Cleveland Museum of Art opened its doors. Thus, as 2015 turned into 2016, the Cleveland museum rang in the start of […]

And To All A Good Night…

It’s my tradition at Christmas time to share a beautiful nativity scene with readers of Real Clear Arts. This year, I’ve chosen a painting by Fra Angelico and Filippo Lippi–a tondo titled Adoration of the Magi and now in the collection of the National Gallery of Art, though once in the possession of the Medicis. […]

Small Museum Makes Waves

For Sotheby’s, the continuing sales of Alfred Taubman’s estate have got to be a disappointment. The auctioneer may not even make back its $500 million-plus guarantee, based on sales of his Impressionist, Modern, contemporary and American art, let alone make a profit. This week, his The Great Florida Sunset (at left) by Martin Johnson Heade sold […]

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