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Archive for the ‘Paintings’ Category

logo-mauritshuisArtstor and Mauritshuis are collaborating to make available 1,200 images of works and their versos from the museum’s permanent collection.

The Mauritshuis is home to the very best of Dutch Golden Age painting. More than two hundred key works from Dutch and Flemish masters are on display in the intimate rooms of this seventeenth-century mansion in The Hague, ranging from such masterpieces as Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl EarringThe Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp by Rembrandt, and The Goldfinch by Carel Fabritius, to genre paintings by Jan Steen, landscapes by Jacob van Ruisdael, still lifes by Adriaen Coorte, and portraits by Rubens.

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On July 14, we celebrated the storming of the Bastille, the momentous day in 1789 that marked the beginning of the French Revolution, and the beginning of the end of the monarchy.

While it is a day revered by the citoyens of France, it has come to symbolize the declining fortunes of the king and his once celebrated and later reviled wife, Marie Antoinette.

Anonymous French printmaker | Coiffure of Independence or The Triumph of Liberty | c. 1778 | Musée national de la coopération franco-américaine

Anonymous French printmaker | Coiffure of Independence or The Triumph of Liberty | c. 1778 | Musée national de la coopération franco-américaine | Photographer: Gérard Blot. Image and original data provided by Réunion des Musées Nationaux / Art Resource, N.Y. artres.com

History has revised the narrative of the Queen whose apocryphal utterance “let them eat cake” allegedly flaunted her disregard for her starving subjects.

Beginning with the nineteenth-century biography by the Goncourt brothers, and the insightful study of Zweig (1932), and culminating in recent portrayals, notably Coppola’s film of 2006, and Thomas’ chronicle of Marie Antoinette’s final days, Farewell, My Queen (published in 2003 and released as a film in 2012), characterizations of the monarch have softened and become more nuanced.

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Maurice Prendergast, Bastille Day; Le Quatorze Juillet, 1892. Image and data from The Cleveland Museum of Art

Maurice Prendergast, Bastille Day; Le Quatorze Juillet, 1892. Image and data from The Cleveland Museum of Art

No matter where you were in the U.S. this Fourth of July, you probably had the opportunity to enjoy the Independence Day fireworks. Next week will be the turn for our friends in France to enjoy their revolution celebration with fireworks. Bastille Day, or Le quatorze juillet, commemorates the storming of the Bastille prison in Paris on July 14, 1789. The capture of the prison marked the beginning of the French Revolution and the end of Louis XVI’s absolute monarchy. Three years later the First Republic was born.

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Reginald Marsh, Wonderland Circus, Sideshow Coney Island, 1930, The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, the State Art Museum of Florida, a division of Florida State University. © 2008 Estate of Reginald Marsh / Art Students League, New York / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Reginald Marsh, Wonderland Circus, Sideshow Coney Island, 1930, The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, the State Art Museum of Florida, a division of Florida State University. © 2008 Estate of Reginald Marsh / Art Students League, New York / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

When the weather starts getting unbearable New Yorkers—Artstor staff included—flock to the boardwalks of Brooklyn’s Coney Island or Rockaway Beach in Queens.

This ritual is nothing new and was, in fact, one of the pet subjects of Reginald Marsh (1898 –1954), an American artist famous for his paintings of New York City in the ’20s and ’30s. His city scenes are remarkable for their palpable sense of movement—bodies walk or loiter on street corners, crowds swell as New York’s lights pulsate and glow in the background.

That Marsh’s canvases seem to vibrate is due not only to his staccato brush strokes and bright, reflective colors, but also to his choice of subject matter. Rather than portray New York City’s elite, Marsh turned to everyday people and entertainments. Favorite subjects included burlesque and Vaudeville performers, pedestrians and, yes, public beaches. (more…)

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“It’s in the reach of my arms, / The span of my hips, / The stride of my step, / The curl of my lips. / I’m a woman/ Phenomenally. / Phenomenal woman, / That’s me.”

- Maya Angelou

Mickalene Thomas, Don't Forget About Me (Keri), 2009, exhibited at Lehmann Maupin, Spring 2009. Image and original data provided by Larry Qualls, © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / BILDKUNST, Bonn

Mickalene Thomas, Don’t Forget About Me (Keri), 2009, exhibited at Lehmann Maupin, Spring 2009. Image and original data provided by Larry Qualls, © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / BILDKUNST, Bonn

Women have long been used as inspiration for art. They have served as muses to both eastern and western culture, and our bodies have been used to represent the power and beauty of nature.

Yet the images of the female body that we see on a daily basis are often passive and hyper-sexualized. Women’s bodies are the go-to sales tactic in popular media and advertising. Yes, you might say, sex sells, but nothings sells as much as our sex sells. Women’s bodies sell beer, cars, perfume, burgers, chewing gum, and even animals rights (yes, you read that correctly – look up PETA’s campaigns) — and of course, the object that all of the women in these advertisements are ultimately selling is themselves.

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Boris Kustodiyev | Celebration on Uritsky Square in Honor of the Opening of the Second Congress of the Communist International, July 1920 (The Demonstration on Uritsky Square, Comintern); 1921. Image and original data provided by SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y., artres.com; scalarchives.com

Boris Kustodiyev | Celebration on Uritsky Square in Honor of the Opening of the Second Congress of the Communist International, July 1920 (The Demonstration on Uritsky Square, Comintern); 1921. Image and original data provided by SCALA, Florence/ART RESOURCE, N.Y., artres.com; scalarchives.com

More than 1,500 images of art from Russian museums have been released in the Artstor Digital Library in collaboration with the Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives and Scala Archives.

Among the museums included in this release are the Hermitage, the Academy of Science, the Russian State Museum, the Russian National Library, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the Open Air Museum, and the Tretyakov Gallery. (more…)

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Raphael | Saint George and the Dragon | c. 1504 | Musée du Louvre | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com

Raphael | Saint George and the Dragon | c. 1504 | Musée du Louvre | Image and original data provided by Erich Lessing Culture and Fine Arts Archives/ART RESOURCE, N.Y.; artres.com

Carlo Crivelli | Saint George | ca. 1472 | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Carlo Crivelli | Saint George | ca. 1472 | Image © The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Saint George’s Day is celebrated on April 23. I know this because as a child I was obsessed with the world of make-believe. While my sister was collecting books on the natural sciences, I had a whole shelf devoted to children’s versions of Greek mythology, fairy tales, and folklore. The stories I loved best involved magic and monsters. To this day my mother will buy me used books if they have a dragon on the cover. And this is where Saint George comes in.

In the 13th century, Jacobus de Voragine wrote in The Golden Legend that Saint George was a Christian knight who in his travels came across a city called Silene that was being plagued by a dragon that lived in its pond. Silene’s inhabitants were forced to appease the monster by sacrificing their children. The victims were selected through a lottery system, and one day it was the king’s own daughter who drew the last lot.
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Designer:  James Hadley; Manufacturer: Worcester Royal Porcelain Company | Teapot | 1882 | Baltimore Museum of Art

Designer: James Hadley; Manufacturer: Worcester Royal Porcelain Company | Teapot | 1882 | Baltimore Museum of Art

Artstor and the Baltimore Museum of Art are now sharing more than 2,500 images of works from the permanent collection, including the historical Cone Collection, in the Digital Library.

The Baltimore Museum of Art has an internationally recognized collection of 19th-century, modern, and contemporary art. It is best known for the Cone Collection of 3,000 objects bequeathed by Claribel and Etta Cone, two Baltimore sisters who collected 500 works by Henri Matisse, as well as masterpieces by Paul Cézanne and Vincent van Gogh.

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Jean Charlot  | Hawaiian Drummers | May 5, 1950 |1950 May 5 | Work: © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York | Photo credit: Hal Lum  | Photograph © The Jean Charlot Estate LLC

Jean Charlot | Hawaiian Drummers | May 5, 1950 |1950 May 5 | Work: © 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York | Photo credit: Hal Lum | Photograph © The Jean Charlot Estate LLC

Artstor is sharing 101 images of artworks by Louis Henri Jean Charlot (1898–1979) from the Jean Charlot Collection at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa.

Charlot’s output of drawings, paintings, murals, prints, sculptures, illustrations and cartoons, as well as books, articles, and other writings was prodigious. Wherever he lived—whether in France, Mexico, New York, Georgia, Colorado, Hawai‘i or Fiji—his life was full of significant connections with artists and writers, indigenous and working people, influential figures in art and educational institutions, and the Roman Catholic Church. He preserved the records of his encounters, together with those of his own creative and scholarly life, in the original artworks, archival documents, research photographs, audiovisual materials, memorabilia and the publications of his personal library that became the basis of the Jean Charlot Collection.

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Diego Velázquez | The Toilet of Venus ('The Rokeby Venus') | 1647-51 | The National Gallery, London | Photograph: ©The National Gallery, London; nationalgallery.org.uk

Diego Velázquez | The Toilet of Venus (‘The Rokeby Venus’) | 1647-51 | The National Gallery, London | Photograph: ©The National Gallery, London; nationalgallery.org.uk

One hundred years ago today, suffragist Mary Richardson walked into the National Gallery, London and attacked Diego Velázquez’s The Toilet of Venus (AKA The Rokeby Venus) with a meat cleaver. Richardson was protesting the arrest of fellow suffragist Emmeline Pankhurst the previous day.

Detail from a 1914 photograph showing damage to the painting. Image source: Wikipedia.

1914 photograph showing damage to the painting. Image source: Wikipedia.

You can see the impressive results of the National Gallery‘s restoration by searching for Velazquez Toilet of Venus in the Artstor Digital Library and zooming in to compare against the slashes in the image to the right. While the texture of the paint doesn’t betray the repairs, if you look carefully you can detect very slight yellowing on Venus’s skin along the cuts.

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