137 – The little Lord Jesus, Asleep…

Cosmé Tura, Virgin and Child, 1480s. Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venice. Having spent a fair amount of time in my youth in Ferrara, when I was researching my PhD about the sculptures there, I grew inordinately fond of the idiosyncratic school of painting that flourished alongside my far scarcer sculptures. The paintings themselves are remarkably sculptural, weContinue reading “137 – The little Lord Jesus, Asleep…”

136 – At Home with Uncle Gianni

Bernardo Bellotto, Venice: Upper Reaches of the Grand Canal facing Santa Croce, about 1738. National Gallery, London. This Monday, 20 September, I will be putting the National Gallery’s small but perfectly formed exhibition Bellotto: The Königstein Views Reunited into context with a lecture I have entitled Bellotto – The Journey to Dresden, so today IContinue reading “136 – At Home with Uncle Gianni”

135 – Say it with flowers

Carl Larsson, Azalea, 1906. Thielska Gallery, Stockholm. On Monday (6 September) I will be lecturing about two great Swedish artists from the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, Anders Zorn and Carl Larsson, both of whom (and I know I’ve said this before) deserve to be better known. Aside from their enormous technical skill, theContinue reading “135 – Say it with flowers”

Psyching myself up

Jean-Honoré Fragonard, Psyche showing her Sisters her Gifts from Cupid, 1753, National Gallery, London. I was going to write a new post today, but it turns out I’m still in acting mode. After two weeks in Sidmouth playing three different roles in the four playlets that make up Neil Simon’s California Suite we have half a weekContinue reading “Psyching myself up”

134 – Displaced Angels

Raphael, The Sistine Madonna, 1512-14. Gemäldegalerie Alte Meister, Dresden. I am constantly reminded of something that, when I first heard it, was attributed to Mark Twain: ‘I am sorry to have written such a long letter: I didn’t have time to write a short one’. Since then I have heard it attributed to any numberContinue reading “134 – Displaced Angels”

133 – Cleanliness next to Godliness

Luciano Laurana, La Facciata dei Torricini, 1464-72. Palazzo Ducale, Urbino. It’s a long time since I’ve talked about a building, but as today’s façade has a brief mention in the first of my new series of talks about Raphael, (A Boy from Urbino, this Monday 5 July at 6pm) – I thought I’d look atContinue reading “133 – Cleanliness next to Godliness”

130 – Sofonisba and Michelangelo

Sofonisba Anguissola, Asdrubale bitten by a Crayfish, c. 1554. Museo di Capodimonte, Naples. I have talked about Sofonisba before (see Day 77 – Sofonisba Anguissola and Day 90 – Sofonisba, too) but I am being drawn back again – drawn by a drawing, as it happens – because I want to examine a myth andContinue reading “130 – Sofonisba and Michelangelo”

129 – The Calm before the Storm

Jacques-Louis David, The Death of Marat, 1793. Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Brussels. One more painting from the 18th Century before I head back to the Baroque – my next series of lectures is called Caravaggio: A life in three paintings, and will start on Monday 24 May (at 2pm and 6pm, as before) withContinue reading “129 – The Calm before the Storm”