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Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:02 PM

Here, again, is your Friday Afternoon Challenge, DUers! Today: “Backstory Redux.”*

What are the backstories that apply to these works of art?

And we don’t cheat and “guess” here...so please don’t.

1a.

1b.


2a.

2b.


3a.

3b.


4a.

4b.



*With grateful homage to the late Sir Kenneth Clark, whose insights inspired this Challenge.

59 replies, 4134 views

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Reply Here, again, is your Friday Afternoon Challenge, DUers! Today: “Backstory Redux.”* (Original post)
CTyankee Feb 2013 OP
CTyankee Feb 2013 #1
seabeyond Feb 2013 #2
CTyankee Feb 2013 #3
CTyankee Feb 2013 #4
elleng Feb 2013 #5
CTyankee Feb 2013 #6
elleng Feb 2013 #7
CTyankee Feb 2013 #8
elleng Feb 2013 #9
CTyankee Feb 2013 #10
elleng Feb 2013 #11
marions ghost Feb 2013 #15
CTyankee Feb 2013 #18
marions ghost Feb 2013 #21
CTyankee Feb 2013 #25
marions ghost Feb 2013 #32
CTyankee Feb 2013 #33
longship Feb 2013 #12
CTyankee Feb 2013 #13
longship Feb 2013 #16
CTyankee Feb 2013 #22
longship Feb 2013 #24
CTyankee Feb 2013 #27
pinboy3niner Feb 2013 #14
marions ghost Feb 2013 #17
CTyankee Feb 2013 #19
marions ghost Feb 2013 #23
CTyankee Feb 2013 #26
marions ghost Feb 2013 #31
CTyankee Feb 2013 #36
suffragette Feb 2013 #48
CTyankee Feb 2013 #49
suffragette Feb 2013 #50
CTyankee Feb 2013 #51
suffragette Feb 2013 #56
CTyankee Feb 2013 #20
marions ghost Feb 2013 #28
CTyankee Feb 2013 #29
CTyankee Feb 2013 #30
countryjake Feb 2013 #34
CTyankee Feb 2013 #35
CTyankee Feb 2013 #37
countryjake Feb 2013 #38
CTyankee Feb 2013 #39
countryjake Feb 2013 #42
velvet Feb 2013 #43
countryjake Feb 2013 #44
longship Feb 2013 #40
velvet Feb 2013 #41
CTyankee Feb 2013 #45
awoke_in_2003 Feb 2013 #46
CTyankee Feb 2013 #47
countryjake Feb 2013 #52
CTyankee Feb 2013 #53
CTyankee Feb 2013 #54
countryjake Feb 2013 #55
CTyankee Feb 2013 #57
entanglement Feb 2013 #58
CTyankee Feb 2013 #59

Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:28 PM

1. Hello, any of my peeps here?

Got some ideas? A guess?

I won't bite you (I promise!)...

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:29 PM

2. i love the first one, immediately. who did it?

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #2)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:32 PM

3. of course!

Research, research, research...

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #2)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:34 PM

4. whose art does it remind you of?

that's a start.

I love that one best, too. It's why I started with it in this Challenge...so beautiful...

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #2)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:39 PM

5. My bet: Da Vinci

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Response to elleng (Reply #5)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:46 PM

6. which???

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #6)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:54 PM

7. Which DaVinci, or which picture?

Leonardo!
Some angel.

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Response to elleng (Reply #7)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:55 PM

8. which picture.

Ah, here's where the "back story" is...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #8)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:57 PM

9. Dunno, m'dear.

have to spend more time with you!!!

Snowing up there???

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Response to elleng (Reply #9)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 05:58 PM

10. Yep. Big snow, big time...

are you getting much snow?

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #10)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:00 PM

11. None, Zero, Zilch.

Boring, but safe.

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #6)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:44 PM

15. Both?

"Virgin of the Rocks"

Leonardo da Vinci
Year 1483-1486

There are two versions.

Also some controversy that the baby isn't Jesus but John the Baptist?

-----------------


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/art/8836162/The-mystery-of-Leonardos-two-Madonnas.html

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #15)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:01 PM

18. You got it marion's ghost! There are two versions. Which is which? and which came first?

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #18)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:31 PM

21. I think this is right...this is confusing!

1b--The one in the Louvre, earlier. Pointing finger of the angel.
1a--The version in England National Gallery was finished 20 years later. No pointing finger (& other differences)

----------------------------

A complex history

The Louvre version of the picture was to have been the central part of a polyptych which the Brotherhood of the Immaculate Conception commissioned Leonardo and the de Predis brothers to paint for a chapel in the church of San Francesco Grande in Milan in 1483. The other version, now in the National Gallery in London and known to have formerly been in this chapel, and several archive documents indicate that the Louvre painting was never installed there. Its presence in the French royal collection is attested from 1627, but several clues suggest it may have been acquired much earlier.

The most convincing hypothesis is that the picture, painted between 1483 and 1486, did not meet with Leonardo’s clients’ full satisfaction, which enabled Louis XII to acquire it around 1500−1503. The second, replacement picture, now in London, may have been painted by Ambrogio de Predis under Leonardo’s supervision between 1495 and 1508.


---------------------------
Another version of the story:

Leonardo’s second Virgin of the Rocks took rather longer to complete. Begun in the 1490s, it was still unfinished by the turn of the century, when the arrival of invading French troops forced Ludovico from power and heralded Leonardo’s hasty departure from Milan. The artist would only return in 1506 and it wasn’t until 1508 that his second Virgin was (at last) deemed sufficiently finished for final payment to be made.

In truth, the painting still contains mysteries — but its secrets are not coded so much as occluded. Because the Louvre has taken an extremely conservative approach to its Leonardos, the French version of The Virgin of the Rocks has undergone little in the way of serious restoration and cleaning. The London version, which has been very recently and extensively cleaned, gives a much truer and brighter sense of Leonardo’s palette and tonal range. The picture used to be thought inferior to the Louvre version and has even been doubted as an autograph picture by the artist’s own hand. But the recent cleaning has brought out such exquisite details as the Madonna’s gentle, solicitous face and her vividly painted drapery that it’s hard to believe anyone other than Leonardo could have been responsible. The London picture is more monumental, in that the figures resemble types rather than individuals. The four figures are larger in relation to the overall scale of the panel and form a more emphatic pyramid. The potentially distracting gesture of the angel, pointing at John the Baptist, has been suppressed.

But there are areas where the handling seems more cursory. The rocks are observed with less geological precision, so that they become almost like stage scenery, while the flowers in the foreground have been depicted in a less delicate and more workmanlike style. Luke Syson, curator of the National Gallery’s forthcoming blockbuster, argues that such simplifications represent a profound change of philosophical approach on the part of Leonardo — that in the later picture, he wanted to place a more idealised Virgin in a more generalised and therefore “perfected” version of the natural world. That may be true but it’s also possible that Leonardo, overburdened with work as usual, simply painted the rocks and plants as quickly as he could.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #21)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:53 PM

25. Sir Kenneth argues for 1a. to be the SECOND version, albeit a bit reservedly...

"Beautiful as it is, this angel lacks the enchantment of the lighter, more Gothic angel in the Paris version. It embodies the result of Leonardo's later researches in which ideal beauty and classic regularity of chiaroscuro were combined, with a certain loss of freshness, but with an expressive power which almost hypnotised his contemporaries."

But this is text from his book of 1938 so...

I really don't know...I have seen the Paris version at the Louvre (l.a.) and will see the London version (l.b. in late May)....

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #25)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:17 PM

32. And I hope you come back from that trip

and give us your insights on this question!

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #32)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:25 PM

33. Oh, dear. That is a heavy responsibility...I am no art critic, just an art lover...

if I have any insights, I'll let you know!...

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:05 PM

12. A kick for you CTyankee

I recently have become a fan but will probably just sit in the background for a while and enjoy these threads from afar. Maybe I'll know one of them sometimes. Bandwidth limits here.


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Response to longship (Reply #12)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:11 PM

13. Oh, thanks! But your insights are important!

Nothing is out of line here when people are sincerely expressing their view of art...I love to hear about their own responses because art MUST have viewers otherwise it wouldn't exist...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #13)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:48 PM

16. I haven't studied art since the 60's.

I am one of those science geeks, who likes art, but knows next to nothing about it.

Too bad you aren't posting about classical music. But audio is difficult on these forums.

If I have an inkling, I will indeed chime in. But so far I feel fairly overwhelmed.

But, once somebody mentioned da Vinci for #1a, I could kind of see it.

Thanks for your encouragement. I will try.

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Response to longship (Reply #16)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:38 PM

22. Oh, boy, I'm sorry...I think sometimes I get prettymuch in the weeds...

Leonardo is difficult, so I rarely (like never) present him, but this is different. !a. and 1b. are both Leonardos but one precedes the other. THAT is the story. Which is it?

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #22)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:49 PM

24. Damn! If it doesn't look like the same model!

Am I right about that? They look the same.

Reminds me of Renoir's "Luncheon of the boating party" where all the females in the scene are the same model.


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Response to longship (Reply #24)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:00 PM

27. now that's interesting! I had no idea...

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:30 PM

14. #2b: Andrea Mantegna - The Agony in the Garden

The backstory:




Andrea Mantegna had a preference for barren, rocky landscapes. In this painting he uses the landscape to emphasize Jesus' emotions of loneliness and fear.

Three disciples are asleep while the agonized Jesus prays to his father. He feels his end is approaching. Mantegna even shows this approaching: in the background Judas and a group of soldiers come to arrest Jesus. To the right the sky is becoming lighter: a new day has come.

http://www.artbible.info/art/large/281.html


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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 06:59 PM

17. 2a--Agony in the Garden --Bellini (Mantegna's Bro-in-law)

Bellini Giovanni The agony in the garden
by Giovanni Bellini


Agony in the Garden
c. 1465
Tempera on wood, 81 x 127 cm
National Gallery, London

This early work of Bellini is fundamental for measuring the relationship that existed between the two brothers-in-law, Giovanni Bellini and Andrea Mantegna. A fairly strong resemblance links this work with the analogous subject painted by Mantegna in 1459, possibly for Giacomo Marcello, now also at the National Gallery in London. Indeed, both works were for long considered to be by Mantegna. The atmosphere is leaden and rarefied, and the harsh, barren landscape retains some of the strong elemental emotions of the primitives (in fact much of the setting is drawn from an idea of Jacopo's, exemplified by a sketch from his London notebook); the scene has a motionless essentiality. However, beyond the highly forced lines (still not even approaching the urgency of Mantegna's style) the dramatic way in which the two painters approach the subject is different: Mantegna's harsh and embossed in the dark contrast of strong colours; Bellini's more subtly lyrical and humanly resigned.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #17)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:12 PM

19. Oh, yes, and why is it that we don't like Mantegna so much and love Bellini more?

See Christiansen, the Jayne Wrightsman Curator of European Paintings at the Metropolitan Museum in NYC. His "Why Mantegna Matters' in the New Republic http://www.newrepublic.com/article/books/why-mantegna-matters#discusses this phenomenon...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #19)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:46 PM

23. This excerpt is well put...

From the New Republic article:

"Both Leonardo da Vinci and Mantegna cast a far more critical and even a pessimistic eye on the world around them, and what they saw was ignorance, folly, wantonness--and a lack of recognition of real genius. It is this biting, incisive, exalted mind that gives the art of Mantegna such an extraordinary edge and moral authority. And it is that which makes it very much the antidote to our frivolous and foolish times."

-----------------

So I guess the answer would be--Bellini's work is a bit more happy and Mantegna has an edge of pessimism. People like happy.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #23)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:57 PM

26. When I see Bellini's "St. Francis in the Desert" at the Frick in NYC I am reminded of how

this love we have of Bellinii. And it is not undeserved, actually, IMHO. I really do like that picture and feel it is worthy of our praise.

I just don't really understand the put down of poor Mantegna...(but I don't always like his works...)

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #26)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:13 PM

31. OK so here's the full Bellini



You know i like both of them but they do have different sensibilities-- just off the top of my head:

--Bellini's is far more emotional and dramatic, more fantastic, lyrical (clouds are great)

--Mantegna's is more technically correct (in the foreshortening), shows a more cool approach, more symbolism (I like his rabbits)

I like both of these versions--but I know the historians have their biases...

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #31)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:35 PM

36. Oh, Bellini has his rabbit in a hole in St. Francis in the desert...kinda cute it is...

there is something I really don't like about Mantegna tho, and I can't put my finger on it...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #36)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 01:54 PM

48. I agree with you

I like the sense of space and distance in the Bellini. Looking at the different parts of it feels a bit like walking to the different places and gives a sense of time and space between them.
The Mantegna feels crammed or bunched together for me, almost like everything is piled on top of the other or all pushed to the forefront for attention.
Of course, this is from my untrained perspective.

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Response to suffragette (Reply #48)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 03:12 PM

49. Thanks, that is a fresh perspective. I hadn't thought of it that way.

I, too, am essentially untrained. I just read a lot. I would like to take a course that explains in more detail the elements of style in drawing/painting/sculpture. sometimes, when reading art criticism, I get lost in the sentences because they speak a language all their own. But some, like Peter Schjeldahl of The New Yorker, just write in ordinary terms that interested readers who are not art schooled can understand. His columns are just wonderful that way...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #49)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 03:26 PM

50. Hope all is ok for you in the storm

What I love about your threads is that I'll look at something I may not have seen before and give some thought to details I likely would not have noticed.

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Response to suffragette (Reply #50)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 03:30 PM

51. Oh, great, that is what I really hoped would happen (the Challenge part is just a hook

to get people interested and doing a bit of research) !

We're good here in the snow. The sun is out and tomorrow it will get up to 40 degrees so we may have some melt off. The flat part of my roof is not endangered the way it was in 2011 (4 feet of snow!). I just posted about getting my dryer vent shoveled out so I can do laundry. Whew!

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #51)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 06:14 PM

56. And you know I do love the mystery and the hunt as well

Also the joy of recognizing an artist, painting or style when that happens.

Glad to hear you're doing well. Give yourself some relaxing time in there- perfect moment to curl up with some hot chocolate or mulled wine and a good book.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #17)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 07:14 PM

20. Can you tell me how you came to see this?

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #20)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:01 PM

28. well....

I knew that 2b was Italian Renaissance and recognised the sleeping disciples vaguely and was casting around for it when Pinboy posted "Agony in the Garden" by Mantegna--so then I looked up "Agony in the Garden" (figuring it could be like #1a/b) and found the painting by Bellini...recognizing the fragment by the distinctive orange robed figure with the head cocked back.

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Response to marions ghost (Reply #28)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:08 PM

29. Bellini was he younger of the two and must have been a bit unhappy about it so my guess is

that he wanted to rival his brother in law, who was older. Do you like Mantegna or Bellini better as artists?

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:11 PM

30. OK, folks, any guesses on 3a. and 3b. and 4a. and 4b.?

What do you think, folks?

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:26 PM

34. Would #4a be Helen of Troy?

I haven't the faintest idea whose house (or palace) it apparently is hanging in, but judging by the helmets of the guys in the picture, it must be a Greek depiction. I can't say whether it's Menelaus, Theseus, or Paris doing the abducting, either, nor figure the symbolism of the golden amphora, so it's just my weak guess.

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Response to countryjake (Reply #34)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:30 PM

35. no, it does not appear to be any of those...

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Response to countryjake (Reply #34)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:39 PM

37. HINT: this is a recent story in the news, folks!

Like only a couple of weeks ago! Heads up!

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #37)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:44 PM

38. Oh my!

Fancy houses, royal collections, golden pitchers, rapes of goddesses...can't wait to hear the back story for this one!

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Response to countryjake (Reply #38)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 08:47 PM

39. No royal collections etc. This was a real deal...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #39)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 12:15 AM

42. Aha, found it! Putting on the Ritz in Paris!

PARIS – The Hôtel Ritz Paris, famous for its bar, its swimming pool and its assignations, had a treasure hiding in plain sight, an exceptional painting that had been hanging on a wall for decades without anyone paying it the least attention.

With the hotel shut for renovation, the auction house Christie’s announced this week that art experts had decided that the long-ignored canvas was by Charles Le Brun, one of the masters of 17th-century French painting, and that it would be put it up for auction.

The painting, called “Le Sacrifice de Polyxène” (“The sacrifice of Polyxena”), dates from 1647. It hung above a desk in the hotel suite where Coco Chanel lived for more than 30 years, and was only discovered to be important last summer, when the hotel shut for a 27-month renovation in the face of stiff competition from newer hotels.

The painting depicts the killing of Polyxena, the youngest daughter of King Priam of Troy, who according to myth revealed the weakness of Achilles’ heel and thus led to his death. It will be shown at Christie’s in New York from Jan. 26 to 29 and auctioned on April 15.

read more...
http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/25/a-17th-century-masterpiece-discovered-at-the-ritz-in-paris/



I finally found it googling "classical painting in the news", duh! (That's after researching every greek goddess known to man, the Iliad, the Odyssey, and the Aeneid...ask me anything.)

Pretty neat that the painting has been hiding right under everyone's noses for who knows how long!

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Response to countryjake (Reply #42)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 12:33 AM

43. Bravo!

Well found, countryjake. Such a simple and direct search phrase. 'Tis a lesson to me, me of little faith in humans, who went the negative route and searched for "art thefts January 2013".

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Response to velvet (Reply #43)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 01:02 AM

44. Well, it wasn't actually such a direct search...

considering that I've sat here for the past three hours re-familiarizing myself with Greek mythology, and Polyxena was NOT included in that study, ha!

It was only after I'd given up on Greece and came back here to read again that CTyankee had said it was "the real deal" that I changed tacks and tried searching "art discoveries in current news" but even her good clue led me nowhere using that phrase. Then I read up on the goddess Minerva and the Medal of Honor for a bit before going back to "in the news".

An evening well spent for me, since my better-half has been watching gruesome mysteries on tv this whole time.
I much prefer mythological murder to actual blood and gore.

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 09:51 PM

40. 3a is from Michelangelo's Night and Day.

I thought it looked kind of like Michelangelo, so I gave it a shot.

Here's Night:


Here's both Day and Night:


I have no idea about 3b, but I'd bet it's a mask of the same character.

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Response to longship (Reply #40)

Fri Feb 8, 2013, 10:09 PM

41. Ooh, ya beat me to it, longship

Last edited Sat Feb 9, 2013, 12:40 AM - Edit history (1)

I'd just identified #3a, and thought I'd better refresh the thread before I posted - and there you were. All I can I can add is that the whole thing is the tomb of Giuliano de Medici.

As for #3b, it looks kinda sorta vaguely familiar, but ...

Edited to add: Over two hours later and I'm still trying to pin down the backstory as well as identify 3b. Ah, but I've read some fascinating articles along the way!! Florentine history, humanists and neoplatonists, evil plots and abstruse iconography ... oh yeah! Love it.

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Response to velvet (Reply #41)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:47 AM

45. sounds like you are as incorrigible as I am!

hint: 3b is no longer in Florence...

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 01:06 PM

46. Fun thread...

I am not very schooled in art, but do appreciate it. I will be checking in on Fridays. Thanks for linking me here.

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Response to CTyankee (Original post)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 01:30 PM

47. for all of you wondering about the answer to 3b...

It is a detail from Allegory by Bronzino:

Sir Kenneth Clark theorized that Bronzino, being a Mannerist, paid homage to the mask in Michelangelo's Night. He writes: "Actually Bronzino's masks have a literary significance, for they lie at the feet of Fraud and Folly, and are part of the allegory of passion which is the real subject of the picture."

Allegory is in London's National Gallery, where Clark was once the Gallery's Director back in the 1930s. Clark died in 1983.

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #47)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 04:21 PM

52. That wolf-girl with the tail has her hands on backwards!

Assuming that she is "Fraud", what is she holding in her right (left) hand...someone's heart?

That is quite the painting; I'd never even heard of Bronzino, so I thank you for this.

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Response to countryjake (Reply #52)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 04:29 PM

53. The reveral of hands apparently was a "sign" of deception and a common enough

meme back in the day. Somehow the practice just died out...interesting factoid...

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Response to countryjake (Reply #52)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 04:45 PM

54. Other critics are not as kind as Clark about this painting. Nor about Mannerism in general.

Clark's contemporary, John Shearman, disdainfully describes it has having cold, polished and unreal color.

I am put off by the whiteness of some Mannerist paintings, which is why I don't like much of El Greco's works. Also, the elongated bodies, WTH goes with that? Shearman points out that the "the retrieving of energy and organic unity was one of the main achievements of the generation of Caravaggio, Rubens..." and I agree.

If you google Mannerism you'll find some of these disturbing elements of one of its styles. It's a confusing era in art, very short lived in between High Renaissance and Baroque. Some of it is off the wall. But some Mannerists are perfectly fine, from my perspective (see Veronese for instance). But some Rosso da Fiorentino is downright creepy, yet some is quite wonderful...it's like art went through a bi-polar experience of some sort...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #54)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 05:07 PM

55. I know nothing about Mannerism.

But I think the busy-ness of this painting is why I like it; so much to look at in one fell swoop, with so many different expressions, attitudes, eyeballs, objects, sprawled all over. I hadn't even thought of the pale look of it, til I got up to that woman in the corner who has half a head, also mask-like. Cupid certainly is no cherub in this pic, eh? I can't figure if that is a birdcage or an hourglass on the back of the old fellow with wings. I'm sure gonna google this painting, sooner or later, but my allotted 'puter time is short this weekend.

I've always loved El Greco, tore a print of his "View of Toledo" out of one of my art books when I was a kid and hung it in my bedroom. And I didn't know that he was a Mannerist, either, but did recognize the stark, unreal quality of some of his works. Guess I'll certainly be googling Mannerism now, too.

Thank you, again, I really enjoy your weekly lessons.

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Response to countryjake (Reply #55)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 07:34 PM

57. You are so nice to say so. Come back next week if you can...

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #47)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:53 AM

58. I wouldn't have guessed that one in a thousand years

I could have sworn intimate familiarity with Bronzino's gorgeous, sensual "Allegory" prior to this (LOL) - I suppose I never did pay adequate attention to the masks. Incidentally, the grim, agonized woman who lurks in the background has always piqued my curiosity. She has been interpreted variously as representing Despair, Unrequited Desire, Madness, Jealousy and even (my favorite) Syphilis!

Great round, as usual

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Response to entanglement (Reply #58)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:46 AM

59. Well, I'm struggling to get through Shearman's book "Mannerism" so I can understand it better,

but I'm not as big a fan of this painting as you are. There are, however, some Bronzinos that I like. That's another whole conversation...

Hope to see you next week...

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