—The diﬅinguish’d part of Men With Compaſs, Pencil, sword, or Pen, Shou’d in Life’s viſit leave their Name In Characters, which may proclaim, That they with Ardour ﬅrove to raiſe At once their Art’s and Country’s Praiſe. Prior. —from Anecdotes of Painting in England by Mr. Horace Walpole
For those familiar with Ernst van de Wetering’s Rembrandt – The Painter at Work and the Rembrandt Research Project, you may also be aware of the six-part series of Rembrandt books entitled A Corpus of Rembrandt Paintings. If you’re not interested in paying the going rate for an actual volume (Volume I is currently selling […]
If you visit the Contarelli Chapel in Rome’s San Luigi dei Francesi, you can see the paintings that made Caravaggio a superstar. The only down side is having to appreciate The Calling of St. Matthew and The Martyrdom of St. Matthew at oblique angles. Thanks to Factum Arte’s extraordinary images you can now see the […]
I have a recent habit of saving a variety of essays, forums posts and articles I find on the internet as PDFs then assembling them into one bundle, which I print as a bound book and carry around with me for a month or so to read and contemplate. In the latest collection I included an article […]
For those out there like myself interested in technical art history, you can download an excellent free document in PDF presented by the Getty Conservation Institute called Historical Painting Techniques, Materials and Studio Practice. This was called to my attention by Prof. Celeste Brusati at the University of Michigan, and I thank her again for doing […]
For one evaluates pictures differently from tapestries. The latter are purchased by measure, while the former are valued according to their excellence, their subject, and number of figures. —Letter of June 1, 1618, to Sir Dudley Carleton.
I teach a 100 level on-site Art History class for The American University of Rome called Art of Rome.¹ I began teaching it in the Spring of 2007 and, as of this writing, have taught it every semester since. It is, in essence, a hybrid of historical fact—names, dates, places and vocabulary—combined with a methodology designed […]
Some time back in 2012 I read Virgil Elliot’s Traditional Oil Painting. He refers to Burnt Umber as a Problematic Pigment: The author [Virgil Elliott] has all but dropped burnt umber from his palette, owing to its high degree of absorbency when dry, which causes varnish to sink in, leaving chalky-appearing “dry spots.” It can […]
Decades ago this would often come up in discussion with Maestro: what is the difference between “Illustration” and “Painting”? Here’s a thought I had tonight on the way home from Tuesday’s figure drawing lesson: Illustration is execution; Painting is performance. Illustration is the end of the journey; Painting is the means of the journey. Your […]
When Craft and Quality are smothered by Dogma: Kate Middleton’s Portrait.
While speaking with the Maestro earlier tonight on Skype we spent some of the time discussing some of the finer points I made during the presentation I gave of Netherland from a few weeks back, and it occurred to me that I had failed to write any of it down. It now occurs to me that […]
Notes on the notes: this post is long overdue! My glorious trip to the National Gallery occurred almost one year ago and the following notes I took on my iPad before, during and after my time in the National Gallery. I had put off publication mainly because I was going to accompany these notes with […]