Fine Art Connoisseur Mar/Apr 2015

art magazine for collectors of fine art

United States
Streamline Publishing
$9.32(Incl. tax)
$44.25(Incl. tax)
6 Issues

in this issue

1 min
frontispiece: hendrick goltzius

Hendrick Goltzius (1558-1617) after Polidoro da caravaGGio (1492-1543), NeptuNe, 1592, enGravinG on PaPer, 14 x 8 1/4 in., san dieGo MuseuM of art, on view in tHat MuseuM’s exHibition DiviNe Desire: priNtmakiNg, mythology, aND the Birth of the Baroque (MarcH 28-June 30). for details, see PaGe 94. [The art historian Karel] van Mander tells us that [the creator of this print, Hendrick] Goltzius burned both hands as a child, that the right hand had failed to heal properly, remaining partly clenched, and that he trained this disfigured hand to handle the burin [a printmaking tool].— The art historian Walter S. Melion…

3 min
going backwards

I recently heard from a reader who had been exposed during art school to “great abstract expressionism.” She felt that much of the work illustrated in this magazine is “going backwards in the history of art,” that our representational art offers little “pushing of boundaries, risky experimentation, or motivations deeper than copying pretty scenes.” Her feedback reflects the prevailing belief in a progressive art-historical timeline. Of course it’s true that — when we trace the primacy of color, for example — Veronese led to Rubens to Delacroix to Matisse to Ellsworth Kelly. Taught in Art History 101 classes everywhere, this progression seemingly suggests that new art must always aspire to the next level if it is to be considered worthy. Contemporary art should always be the latest model car. So is it…

3 min
learning from history

As a native of Washington, D.C., and as a student of museum history, I have been observing with fascination a delicate dance being performed in the nation’s capital. Last August, the authorities agreed that the assets of the Corcoran — for as long as I can recall, an institution in deficit, and in search of a compelling identity — should be transferred to stronger institutions. The works in the Corcoran Gallery of Art would go to the National Gallery of Art, located a mile away, while its building and College of Art + Design would pass to George Washington University. This sensible agreement marked the end of an era in American cultural history. Within spitting distance of the White House, the Corcoran Gallery opened in 1874, underwritten by the banker William…

4 min
gari melchers: an american cosmopolitan

Renowned during his lifetime and unfairly overlooked since then, Gari Melchers (1860-1932) is finally getting his due, at Connecticut’s Fairfield University. On view at the Bellarmine Museum of Art there from March 5 through May 22 is the exhibition Gari Melchers: An American Impressionist at Home and Abroad, which features 23 works in oil, pastel, watercolor, gouache, and charcoal, all borrowed from the Gari Melchers Home and Studio in Falmouth, Virginia. Born in Detroit to German immigrant parents, Julius Garibaldi Melchers was named for his sculptor father (Julius) and the patriot-revolutionary then unifying the Italian principalities into a single country (Giuseppe Garibaldi). At 17, “Gari” headed to the Royal Prussian Academy of Art in Düsseldorf, which, though not as influential as it had been 30 years earlier, gave him the rigorous…

8 min
revisiting georges folmer’s earlier work

The French artist Georges Folmer (1895-1977) enjoyed a successful career that spanned most of the 20th century, a period of enormous change in every field, especially art in France. Like many of his contemporaries, Folmer started out making representational work, but shifted to abstraction from the 1930s onward. It was these abstractions that won him fame, and that have long been collected by such museums as Paris’s Centre Pompidou. Today, almost 40 years after his death, Folmer’s name remains familiar to art lovers in France, yet few have seen his earlier, more traditional works, which are often excellent in their own right. Now is a superb time to consider them, thanks to the publication this February of the first Fol-mer catalogue raisonné, a well-illustrated 320-page volume in French and English…

2 min
clyde aspevig: committed to nature

On view through May 10 at the Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville, Georgia, is the exhibition Nature and Nuance: The Art of Clyde Aspevig. Regularly ranked among America’s top landscape painters, Clyde Aspevig (b. 1951) is not as familiar to Easterners as he deserves to be, so this selection of approximately 30 recent works offers a comparatively rare opportunity to admire his virtuosity up close. Steeped in the landscape tradition of Albert Bierstadt and Thomas Moran, Aspevig is best known for grand vistas of unspoiled Western scenery, yet he is also a gifted creator of more intimate, even poetic, scenes of ostensibly “ordinary” passages of nature. Though most closely associated with the High Plains, Rocky Mountains, and his native Montana, Aspevig carries his easel much farther afield, from Death Valley…