Artwork of the Week

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Artwork of the Week: March 6

Posted on Friday, March 6th, 2015

A tour de force of the glassworker’s skill, this vessel is the most elaborate trail-decorated jar known to survive from the late eastern Roman Empire. Collared jars, made from the late fourth century onward, have been found at sites all along the Syro-Palestinian coast, where glassblowing was invented, but none match this example in complexity. […]

Artwork of the Week: February 27

Posted on Friday, February 27th, 2015

Julian Schnabel created a sensation in the artworld when he showed his infamous “plate paintings” in 1979. Following two decades dominated by abstract and conceptual works of art, paintings of figures seemed shocking and confrontational. That Schnabel mined pre-existing sources for his images and constructed convoluted surfaces on which to paint them seemed all the […]

Artwork of the Week: February 20

Posted on Friday, February 20th, 2015

This pendant shows the face of a male member of the Baule people with braided hair and beard. The raised lines between the eyes and at the temples are cosmetic marks. Each Baule head pendant is unique and individualized; they are said to be idealized portraits of friends or lovers. Baule families collect the gold […]

Artwork of the Week: February 13

Posted on Friday, February 13th, 2015

Gustave Courbet, famous in his day for his confrontational images of peasant life and dramatic landscapes, led a personal campaign to reform art, declaring brashly that artists must represent contemporary life, not imitate the past. This painting of a woman arranging cut flowers on an outdoor trellis reflects Courbet’s realist manifesto, since it presents the […]

Artwork of the Week: February 6

Posted on Friday, February 6th, 2015

From the late 16th to the late 18th centuries, European colonialism was expanding in the East. Europe became enamored of Chinese style, and a fashion known as chinoiserie permeated the decorative arts. This large pagoda clock is one of the most elaborate and charming timepieces made in England in chinoiserie style. The three tiers enclose […]

Artwork of the Week: January 30

Posted on Friday, January 30th, 2015

This table would have been placed in the center of a drawing room, parlor, or library, making it a noticeable statement of its owner’s wealth and sophisticated taste. The industrial boom that followed the Civil War brought new opportunities for wealth. American designers often looked to the past for styles that expressed their patrons’ new […]

Artwork of the Week: January 23

Posted on Friday, January 23rd, 2015

Painter Josepha Gasch-Muche believes that every material, regardless of whether it is naturally or industrially produced, has its own inherent structure and texture waiting to be given form. She was attracted to broken LCD (liquid crystal display) glass because it is thin, strong, and can be arranged in different ways to reflect and scatter light. […]

Artwork of the Week: January 16

Posted on Friday, January 16th, 2015

The city of Tanagra gave its name to a type of charming fired clay statuette when thousands were excavated from its cemeteries during the 1870s. The heads, arms, and bodies were formed in molds and assembled, then hand-finished to make each figurine unique with details like earrings, curls of hair, hats, and fans. The surface […]

Artwork of the Week: January 9

Posted on Friday, January 9th, 2015

Georges Braque collaborated closely with Pablo Picasso in working out the approach to painting that would result in Cubism. Whereas Picasso would go on to develop a spectacular series of personal styles, Braque continued to increase his mastery and free use of Cubism’s vocabulary of form, superimposing and combining different views of the same object. […]

Artwork of the Week: January 2

Posted on Friday, January 2nd, 2015

Camille Pissarro was suffering from a chronic eye infection that kept him indoors when he painted this view of the northern French city of Rouen through a window of his hotel (he died blind). As he wrote to his son Lucien, also an artist, in February of 1896, “Just imagine: the whole of old Rouen […]