Monticello

Posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum, Prints and Drawings

The Drawing That Once Hung in Thomas Jefferson’s Parlor

The Fright of Astyanax (Hector Bidding Farewell to Andromache), Benjamin West, 1797. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 84.GG.722
The Fright of Astyanax (Hector Bidding Farewell to Andromache), Benjamin West, 1797. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 84.GG.722

An American has slipped his way into exclusive British company—the exhibition Luminous Paper: British Watercolors and Drawings, opening July 19. Owned for years by Thomas Jefferson, admirer of all things classical, this pen-and-ink by Pennsylvania-born artist Benjamin West depicts a… More»

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      From you have I been absent in the spring,
      When proud-pied April, dressed in all his trim,
      Hath put a spirit of youth in everything,
      That heavy Saturn laughed and leaped with him,
      Yet nor the lays of birds, nor the sweet smell
      Of different flowers in odor and in hue,
      Could make me any summer’s story tell,
      Or from their proud lap pluck them where they grew.
      Nor did I wonder at the lily’s white,
      Nor praise the deep vermilion in the rose;
      They were but sweet, but figures of delight,
      Drawn after you, you pattern of all those.
      Yet seemed it winter still, and, you away,
      As with your shadow I with these did play.

      —William Shakespeare, born April 23, 1564

      Vase of Flowers (detail), 1722, Jan van Huysum. The J. Paul Getty Museum

      04/23/14

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