Andy Warhol created his first painting of Marilyn Monroe in 1962, in the wake of the American movie star’s sudden death at the age of 36. Tragedy, and its portrayal in modern mass media, fascinated Warhol; at the time of Monroe’s death, the artist was enmeshed in his Death and Disaster series, an exploration of gruesome images found in newspapers and magazines. Monroe’s death pushed the narrative of tragedy and celebrity one step further, and in it Warhol found inspiration for arguably the most important suite in his oeuvre. Dating from 1967, Marilyn Monroe is a complete portfolio of ten screen prints, each produced in a different combination of intense, flat colors. This portfolio, which comes from the estate of Barbara Spiegel Linhart, who purchased the works from David Whitney in 1969, is the best possible example of this important set of screenprints, and is a highlight of Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Sale this May.
Painted in 1919 after the artist fled Paris for the south of France, ‘Jeune Fille en Bleu’ is one of the finest works from the penultimate year of Amedeo Modigliani’s life. In this episode of Expert Voices, Sotheby’s Senior Specialist Simon Stock explains how the search for new subjects in this new location saw Modigliani depicting informal models found in local bars and shops. This portrait captures the serenity of the young girl sitter and we see all the recognisable traits of Modigliani’s late work: the simplified human form, the elongated neck and the vacant eyes.
Amedeo Clemente Modigliani was an Italian Jewish painter and sculptor who worked mainly in France. He is known for portraits and nudes in a modern style characterized by a surreal elongation of faces, necks, and figures that were not received well during his lifetime, but later became much sought-after.
Welcome to a new film series from The Modern House: Modern Makers. Over the next few months, we’ll be taking you inside the studios of a creative bunch of makers who produce modern, beautiful pieces for the home. Expect to hear from a ceramicist, weaver and, for the first instalment, glassblower Jochen Holz. Watch Jochen at work and hear him reflect on inspiration, technique and the fragility of glass.
Mesopotamia—the land “between the rivers” in modern-day Iraq—was home to the ancient Sumerians, Babylonians, and Assyrians. Among their many achievements are the creation of the earliest known script (cuneiform), the formation of the first cities, the development of advanced astronomical and mathematical knowledge, and spectacular artistic and literary accomplishments. The exhibition covers three millennia, from the first cities in about 3200 BC to Alexander the Great’s conquest of Babylon in 331 BC.
Exhibition organized by the Musée du Louvre, Paris, and the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles.
|INSIDE THE ISSUE|
|FEATURES | Michael Rakowitz interviewed by Daniel Trilling; Jon Day on smell and the visual arts; Susan Moore catches up with art collector and former Louvre director Pierre Rosenberg; Oliver Cox on country-house exhibitions in museums; Debika Ray assesses Narendra Modi’s architectural shake-up of New Delhi|
|REVIEWS | Kitty Hauser on new Australian art in Sydney; Matt Stromberg evaluates LACMA’s experimental rehang; Tom Fleming on the life of John Craxton; Clare Bucknell on a study of women’s self-portraits; Glenn Adamson on a history of Western ceramics; Mark Francis on Richard Hamilton, Pop pioneer|
|MARKET | Stephen Ongpin, Thomas Dane and François Chantala consider the future of London’s galleries and fairs; and the latest art market columns from Susan Moore, Emma Crichton-Miller and Samuel Reilly|
|PLUS | Xavier F. Salomon finds a lost Valadier masterpiece in Nicaragua; Isabella Smith visits imperial China through her TV screen; Samuel Reilly on Joan Eardley in Glasgow; Charles Holland on the post-war buildings of Raymond Erith; Thomas Marks on Daniel Spoerri’s tableaux of tables; and Robert O’Byrne picks over Apollo’s wartime diet|
Here is the first episode of the series about archaeology at the Uffizi Galleries, realized by the American Institute for Roman Culture. Darius Arya today speaks about some masterpieces of the Uffizi and the Boboli Gardens.
In this week’s episode of “Cocktails with a Curator,” Curator Aimee Ng explores the turbulent life of the woman portrayed in James McNeill Whistler’s serene “Harmony in Pink and Gray: Portrait of Lady Meux,” currently on view on the fourth floor of Frick Madison. A former bartender and actress, Lady Meux was shunned by London polite society even after she married Sir Henry Bruce Meux, heir to a huge brewery fortune. This week’s complementary cocktail is a refreshing Mummy, a nod to her extensive collection of some 1,800 Egyptian and Assyrian objects, including an infamous mummy of Nesmin.
To view this painting in detail, please visit our website: https://www.frick.org/ladymeux
Director Colin B. Bailey takes a close look at three drawings by Jean-Antoine Watteau (1684–1721), considered some of the finest drawings in the Morgan’s collection: Seated Young Woman (ca. 1716), Young Woman Wearing a Chemise (ca. 1718), and Two Studies of the Head and Shoulders of a Little Girl.
The new crop of Italianate villas, iced white with stucco like giant cakes, and the rows of brick terraces and mansion blocks that followed them soon became home to publishers (Charles Ollier), artists (Sir John Tenniel) and poets: Robert Browning lived at 19, Warwick Crescent for more than 20 years and the pool where the Grand Union and Regent’s canals meet is now called after him.
Watercolor Paintings by Liam O’Farrell
Although Browning has been credited with naming the canal area Little Venice, it was Byron that first (facetiously) compared the basin to the Italian lagoon.
Story has it that the poet used to walk along the Paddington arm of the Grand Union Canal with his publisher, John Murray — helpfully pointing to the bridge where another publisher had once drowned himself — and was inspired to write that ‘there would be nothing to make the canal of Venice more poetical than that of Paddington, were it not for its artificial adjuncts’; a fair point, considering that, at the time, the London canals were lined with warehouses and wrapped in soot.
Even today, however, the elegant terraces halfway up Randolph Avenue, with their tripartite arched windows, are far more reminiscent of the Italian city than Little Venice itself, where the serene buildings and tree-lined banks have a rather more bucolic feel.
In this week’s episode of “Cocktails with a Curator,” Deputy Director and Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator Xavier F. Salomon focuses on Francesco da Sangallo’s “St. John Baptizing,” which can be found at the very center of the third floor of Frick Madison. Commissioned in the 16th century for a church in the Tuscan town of Prato, the bronze statuette has been installed atop a facsimile of the marble holy water font on which it was originally displayed, allowing visitors to see it as it was meant to be viewed. This week’s complementary cocktail is the White Negroni, a modern twist on a classic Florentine cocktail.
To view this painting in detail, please visit our website: https://www.frick.org/sangallobaptizing