May 8, 2013 |
Our cover shows an early and uncharacteristically jaunty painting by George Ault, part of the Lunder Collection featured in the article about the Colby College Museum of Art. Elsewhere in the issue an example of Ault's later, more hard-boiled style can be seen in Marica and Jan Vilcek's collection of
early American modernism. Ault was by most accounts an impossible person who rendered the discouraging reality he perceived around him in his own form of vernacular cubism. His View from Brooklyn is a favorite of mine.
Not to be too squish-headed about it, but the presence of two George Aults here suggests a kind of karma running through this issue. Not quite intentionally, we have paid tribute in a variety of articles to our peculiarly American form of arts patronage: The Vilceks and their foundation; the Alfond and Lunder families and their gifts to Colby; the arts patrons of Fort Worth who staged a remarkable art exhibition for President and Mrs. Kennedy in their hotel s…» More
May 6, 2013 | By Cynthia A. Drayton
Mikhail Romanov was crowned Czar in 1613. The Romanov family then ruled Russia for the next three hundred years until the 1917 assassination of Nicholas II. To mark the four hundredth anniversary of the Romanov's ascension to the throne and the family's patronage of both Fabergé and the decorative arts, there are exhibitions, an auction, and artworks for sale from California to Moscow.
On the West Coast, the Bowers Museum of Art in Santa Ana, CA, hosts the traveling exhibition "The Tsars' Cabinet: Two Hundred Years of Decorative Arts under the Romanovs" from June 8 to September 1. Organized by the Muscarelle Museum of Art at the College of William and Mary, one hundred and sixty objects, many from the
Kat hleen Durdin collection, are on display. Many of these objects were commissioned by Catherine the Great and Nicholas II and his wife Alexandra. While on the East Coast, the Hillwood Estate, Museum, and Gardens in Washington, DC, marks the anniversary…» More
March 25, 2013 | Every so often a few wise things get said about the passions of people who are collectors (most famously in Walter Benjamin's essay "Unpacking My Library"). Rarely is anything of interest written about dealers, and oddly enough, almost nothing can be found on the nature of that intriguing hybrid, the dealer/collector, which brings us to the pre-eminent example of the type, Peter Tillou of Litchfield, Connecticut-and, more importantly, the world. Much has been said and written about Tillou over the years, but taking the measure of this phenom (an appropriate baseball expression for those with prodigious talent exhibited at an early age) requires going beyond the well-worn facts-his fifty-plus years in the trade, his pushing the American folk art market into the commercial stratosphere, his galleries on two continents in the 1990s, and his omnivorous taste-before raising a glass in astonishment. How does he do it?
Like any great dealer, only more so, Peter Tillou is a serial s…» More
March 11, 2013 | A few weeks ago the Connecticut congressman Joe Courtney registered dismay at one of the more significant departures from historical fact inSteven Spielberg's Oscar-bound Lincoln. To dramatize the narrow margin by which the Thirteenth Amendment passed, the film's screenwriter Tony Kushner shows two members of the Connecticut delegation voting against the abolition of slavery. As it happened, all four voted in favor of the amendment. Kushner replied, arguing for his dramatic license (and pointing out that he had changed the names of the actual figures so as not to impugn them). He went on to observe that despite its four enlightened representatives the Nutmeg State ("the Georgia of the North") was soft on slavery, giving his fictionalized vote the whiff of a deeper truth.
Kushner seemed unreasonably peeved at being called into question by a mere congressman, which is too bad as he does have a point: sometimes you need the conventions of fiction to arrive at historical fact. A l…» More
February 1, 2013 | The Winter Antiques Show in New York City comes to a close this weekend. Here is an inside look at one booth: Peter Pap of New York, San Francisco, and NewHampshire.
Winter Antiques Show * Park Avenue Armory, 643 Park Avenue * To February 3 * winterantiquesshow.com
Gemellion, Artist unknown, Limoges, France, 13th century Champlevé Enamel on Copper, 8 7/8” diameter Collection of The Walters’ Art» View All