The Genius of Cento

Perhaps no other artist, excepting the Renaissance painter Giovanni Antonio Bazzi called Il Sodoma (the Sodomite), has been as unfortunately nicknamed as Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, called Guercino, or the “little squinter.”[^1] In spite of his defective eye Guercino “was a great draftsman and a felicitous colorist,” to quote Ludovico Carracci, …

The Charms of Deception

In 1869, a stele with an inscription mentioning the biblical figure Mesha, King of Moab (Kings II 3:4), was found in Palestine. It was immediately acquired for the Louvre by Charles Clermont-Ganneau, the French consul in Jerusalem and a prominent archaeologist. This inscription stimulated great interest in the little-known Moabite …

Canaletto in New York

Visiting the National Gallery in London with an Australian friend, J.M. Whistler denigrated the work of J.M.W. Turner as sloppy and formless: “Come and look at the paintings of a man who was a true workman.” So saying, he led me straight to a Canaletto. “Now,” he said, “here is …