In Donna Tartt’s much-lauded third novel, Fabritius’ painting “The Goldfinch” and the fleeting nature of, well, everything comes together for a brief and shining moment.
Visual Arts: Bureaucratic Vandalism and the Survival of Sheer Excellence
In order to pay tribute to the supreme Frits Lugt and his Fondation Custodia — and to protest the announced closing of the Institut Néerlandais with which it is joined — the column describes an example of Lugt’s collecting genius.
Visual Arts Feature: Rembrandt, Rubens, the Beau Sancy, and the Jew
The history of the Beau Sancy took me back to the years around 1640, when it passed into and out of the orbit of the greatest Netherlandish artists of the day, the Dutchman Rembrandt and the Brabander Rubens.
Visual Arts: Chopped liver at Woburn Abbey
The world press has announced that a painting of an old man in Woburn Abbey, England, has been newly discovered to be an authentic Rembrandt. Gary Schwartz is incensed that the abbey is practicing such flagrant spin, and that the press feeds it to us so uncritically.
Visual Arts: In Rembrandt’s Footsteps
How many painters were taught by Rembrandt? How big was his school? Well, that is a matter for debate — to echo Donald Rumsfeld, there are the known unknowns. Then there are the unknown unknowns
Visual Arts: The Transparent Connoisseur 2
The issues might seem highly technical and of interest only to specialists, but I think they do matter. In the first place they matter as a corrective to our understanding of Rembrandt, but they also matter for the critical insights they offer into the techniques and practices of scholarship. By Gary Schwartz Earlier columns were […]
Visual Arts: Rembrandt’s Imagination
I envision Rembrandt with chalk or pen always at hand, sketching from life and imagination constantly. This is also how he taught his pupils, who like him also produced numerous drawings related and unrelated to paintings or prints. Why do so many experts disagree? By Gary Schwartz In an earlier column I illustrated a large […]
Visual Arts: At Rembrandt’s Core, The Drawings
How many drawings by Rembrandt are around? More than many experts admit. The issue is not just a quibble over numbers. It has far-reaching consequences for our reconstruction of Rembrandt’s working method and our understanding of his art. The showdown is coming at a conference on the artist at the J. Paul Getty Museum in […]
Visuals Arts: Rembrandt and I in Oman
It cannot be said that the average Omani was waiting for an exhibition of Rembrandt etchings. By Gary Schwartz “Frankincense from Oman and paintings by Rembrandt were both part of the good life in the 17th century.” That unlikely quotation is from the script of a film that I wrote and presented this summer to […]
Visual Arts: The Cotswolds Rembrandt
em>The initial reactions by Rembrandt specialists to the Cotswolds painting were nearly all marked by caution.