183 – Another Epiphany

Elisabetta Sirani, Study for ‘The Baptism of Christ’, c. 1658. Graphische Sammlung Albertina, Vienna. Happy New Year! And Happy Christmas (yes, as I write, this is the Twelfth Day), and (given when I am writing) may I wish you a Happy Epiphany for tomorrow? The Wise Men will arrive and recognise Jesus as The Boy BornContinue reading “183 – Another Epiphany”

182 – The Rest of Christmas

Luisa Roldán, The Rest on the Flight into Egypt, c. 1690. The Hispanic Society of America, New York Happy Christmas! And yes, it is still Christmas – as I write it is only the fifth day of twelve, and on the Fifth Day of Christmas… but that doesn’t matter right now. As far as theContinue reading “182 – The Rest of Christmas”

178 – No crib for a bed

Jacques Daret, The Nativity, c. 1434-45. Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid. If you have ever enjoyed the obligation of seeing your child, or a friend’s child, or relative’s child – or anybody’s child for that matter – in a school Nativity play (now curiously abbreviated to ‘their Nativity’ as if you were about to watch theirContinue reading “178 – No crib for a bed”

Some Virtues

Andrea del Verrocchio, Model for the Funeral Monument for Cardinal Niccolò Forteguerri, c. 1476, Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The Sculpture course Form, Function, Material and Memory is rapidly drawing to a close. The last talk will be this Monday 27 June at 6pm, when we will consider Memory – Something to Remember. This will look atContinue reading “Some Virtues”

159 – Michelangelo, holding a candle…

Michelangelo Buonarroti, Angel, 1494-5. San Domenico, Bologna. You would think that no one could hold a candle to Michelangelo – but everyone has to start somewhere, and the young sculptor must have learnt from someone. Indeed, today’s work is an example of the young genius responding – directly and overtly – to someone else’s work,Continue reading “159 – Michelangelo, holding a candle…”

155 – Pre-Announced

Raphael, The Annunciation, c. 1506-7. Nationalmuseum, Stockholm. I’ve said in two different lectures (to two different audiences) that I intend to write about this drawing, thus announcing the Annunciation. I’d not seen it before my first visit to the glorious Raphael exhibition at the National Gallery, but it grabbed my attention, and instantly became myContinue reading “155 – Pre-Announced”

Revisiting Raphael

Raphael Sanzio, The Crucified Christ with the Virgin Mary, Saints and Angels, about 1502-3, National Gallery, London. Happy Easter! And greetings from Vienna! I’m here with a group, and actually wrote this paragraph in London on Easter Monday: I’m sure I’ll have to do a bit of preparation before I go. However, the blog below wasContinue reading “Revisiting Raphael”

144 – Make a joyful noise

Geertgen tot Sint Jans, The Glorification of the Virgin, about 1490-95. Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam. I have a new favourite artist (those of you who follow me on Instagram might have noticed), although sadly a dozen of his works seem to have survived, maybe a couple more or less. This does mean that IContinue reading “144 – Make a joyful noise”

142 – Getting carried away

Nicolas Poussin, The Ecstasy of St Paul, 1649-50. Musée du Louvre, Paris. On the whole I try not to get carried away by things, although, as I’m sure most of you know, my enthusiasm does mean that I rarely have the discipline to edit my presentations adequately – hence my now standard length of anContinue reading “142 – Getting carried away”

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”