Just a Second: Pietà

Michelangelo, Pietà, 1498-1499, marble, 68.5" x 76.8", St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons. Michelangelo, Pietà, 1498-1499, marble, 68.5

Pietà (noun) A representation of a sorrowful Virgin Mary holding the dead body of Jesus, usually found in sculpture.  The most famous example was sculpted by Michelangelo in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome for the French cardinal Jean de Billheres.  The Pietà was an unusual … Continue reading

The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Art Heist No Longer is a Cold Case

Jan Vermeer, The Concert, c. 1664, oil on canvas, 28½” x 25½”, stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons. Jan Vermeer, The Concert, c. 1664, oil on canvas, 28½” x 25½”, stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

On March 18th 1990, as Bostonians were celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, two thieves posing as police officers entered the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, saying they were responding to a call.  The guard on duty allowed the thieves into the museum.  … Continue reading

In Their Own Words: Takashi Murakami

Takashi Murakami, Oval Buddha exhibited at the Palace of Versailles, 2007-2010, Photo by Magic Ketchup via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic License. Takashi Murakami, Oval Buddha exhibited at the Palace of Versailles, 2007-2010, Photo by Magic Ketchup via Flickr, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic License.

“We want to see the newest things. That is because we want to see the future, even if only momentarily. It is the moment in which, even if we don’t completely understand what we have glimpsed, we are nonetheless touched … Continue reading

Rembrandt van Rijn: The Magnet in the Room

Rembrandt van Rijn, Self-Portrait, 1659, oil on canvas, 33 ¼” x 26”, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Image Courtesy of 1000Museums.com. Rembrandt van Rijn, Self-Portrait, 1659, oil on canvas, 33 ¼” x 26”, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. Image Courtesy of 1000Museums.com.

When you walk into any gallery of 17th-century paintings and one by Rembrandt is in the room, you will be drawn to the Rembrandt.  His paintings glow.  In a word, they are “rich,” like a dessert can be rich.  They … Continue reading

Vincent van Gogh Had a Party for One

http://www.the-art-minute.com/vincent-van-gogh-had-a-party-for-one/ Vincent van Gogh, Gauguin’s Chair, November 1888, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Image Courtesy of 1000Museums.com.

The original “tortured artist,” Vincent van Gogh, painted this chair during his good friend and fellow artist, Paul Gauguin’s, visit to his Yellow House in Arles, France, a place that van Gogh dearly hoped would become and artists’ collective someday.  … Continue reading

Pure Freedom

Frank Gehry, Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao, Spain, 1992-1997, Photo by MykReeve, GNU Free Documentation License via Wikimedia Commons. © 2013 . All rights reserved.

Frank Gehry’s design for the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain is so completely unhindered by traditional rules that regulate architectural design that the building has a sculptural appearance that is totally independent of any school of architecture from history. Gehry … Continue reading