Editor’s letter, September 2009

Editorial Staff Opinion

One of the things I admire about Electra Havemeyer Webb was her instinctive sense that the cultural designations of high-, low-, and middlebrow were silly.  I do not mean to suggest that Webb was a prophet of late twentieth-century multiculturalism or that she could have argued for the relative merits of a beautifully carved duck decoy vis à vis a …

An appreciation of Henry Ossawa Tanner

Editorial Staff Art

September 2009 | Within nine years of moving abroad, Henry Ossawa Tanner, America’s first major African American artist, had become an international success. By 1900 he ranked among the leading American artists in Paris and was widely considered the premier biblical painter of his day. Exhibiting regularly at the Paris Salon, he was attracting even greater critical acclaim than Thomas …

Late Gothic coffers

Editorial Staff

February 2009 | Late Gothic imagination was wed to sacred purpose in every particular of daily life. At the close of the Middle Ages, devotion itself was an art, one that lent gravity to all the other arts and shaped the tenor of living. We moderns day-trip to the Gothic world as strangers, carting with us the dry bones of …