About: David Brafman and Lisa Cambier

David Brafman I've been the rare books curator at the Getty Research Institute since 2002. Before decamping from N.Y. to L.A., I was an adjunct professor in the NYU Classics Department and resident-expert at H.P. Kraus, Rare Books and Manuscripts, one of the world's leading dealers in rare books and manuscripts from the Middle Ages to the Enlightenment. I came to that circuitous career path by getting a Ph.D. in classics and Arabic from Duke University (and the irresistible urge to head straight back to N.Y. the second I finished my doctorate). Besides being the rare books curator at the GRI, I'm also the curator in charge of filling the Plaza Display Case, which doesn't mean that I always curate the display myself. In fact, we welcome ideas, suggestions, and proposals for displays that highlight objects from the GRI special collections. I did happen to co-curate the current rotation on display in collaboration with my colleague in Collection Development, Lisa Cambier. Lisa Cambier I'm a staff assistant in Collection Development at the Getty Research Institute, meaning I get to work closely with the curators (including rare books curator David Brafman) on a multitude of projects, from filing reports to examining rare 16th-century books and manuscripts. I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, with a bachelor’s degree in art history and earned my M.A. in Art Business from Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. In the course of conducting research for my M.A. thesis, I learned about the relevant work being done here at the GRI, which sparked my desire to return to sunny California.

Posts by David Brafman and

Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Research Institute

Treasures from the Vault: Needlework Pattern Books

Pattern books from the GRI's collection in a display case, summer 2012

Copies of pattern, model, and sample books for needlework are among the rarest of early modern printed books to survive intact. The reason is simple: virtually all such books were considered “working copies,” and leaves were torn out to be… More»

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      Vermeer’s interiors make possible a sort of encounter in which the painting completely disappears in the viewing, and the viewer is what is seen into, and this is the key to Vermeer’s true design and the source of his work’s mystery.“

      —poet Michael White

      The Milkmaid, ca, 1660. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

      Woman Reading a Letter, ca. 1663. Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

      Young Woman with a Water Pitcher, ca. 1662. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Marquand Collection, Gift of Henry G. Marquand, 1889. www.metmuseum.org

      03/28/15

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