About: John Hicks

I'm a research assistant in the Publications department at the Getty Research Institute.

Posts by John

Posted in Architecture and Design, Getty Research Institute, Publications

Painterly Urban Planning: Nikolaus Pevsner’s “Visual Planning and the Picturesque”

Cover of Nikolaus Pevsner's Visual Planning and the Picturesque, published by the Getty Research Institute
 

Nikolaus Pevsner (1902–1983) was one of the 20th century’s foremost historians of British architecture. Even today, tourists wander through the historic squares of England aided by Pevsner’s The Buildings of England guidebooks, which remain in print with Yale University Press… More»

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Posted in Behind the Scenes, Exhibitions and Installations, Getty Research Institute

Royal Propaganda, from Prints to Pixels

Queens of Persia at the Feet of Alexander (detail), Gérard Edelink after Charles Le Brun, ca. 1675

Spin control—it’s been around for centuries. Louis XIV, king of France from 1660 to 1715, was a master at it, using art—especially the work of his court painter, Charles Le Brun—to create and perpetuate a glorified image of his monarchy…. More»

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      ROSE

      This milky pink boomed into popularity because of a marketing ploy, a mistress, and its ambiguous origins.

      In an effort to compete with the renowned Meissen porcelain factory, the French Sèvres manufactory recruited the glamorous Madame de Pompadour (mistress to King Louis XV). Like a smart sponsorship deal, Sèvres gave her all the porcelain she requested. 

      Introduced in 1757, this rich pink exploded on the scene thanks to favoritism by Madame Pompadour herself. 

      The glaze itself had a weird history. To the Europeans it looked Chinese, and to the Chinese it was European. It was made based on a secret 17th-century glassmaker’s technique, involving mixing glass with flecks of gold.

      For more on colors and their often surprising histories, check out The Brilliant History of Color in Art.

      12/19/14

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