Old Master paintings, oil sketches, ancient encaustic portraits, and more

Also posted in Getty Research Institute, Research

Database of Knoedler Gallery Stock Books Now Online

Scan of a Knoedler stock book
Scan of a Knoedler stock book noting inventory of paintings by Moreau, Gérôme, and others. The Getty Research Institute, 2012.M.54

New online: searchable records from the 19th-century stock books of famed art dealers Knoedler Gallery. More»

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Also posted in Art

Long Looks from Island to Island

Old Couple / John Currin
Artwork © John Currin. Photo: Robert McKeever

Two paintings of lovers, decades and centuries apart. More»

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Also posted in Antiquities, Art, Manuscripts and Books, Sculpture and Decorative Arts

Whale Tales and Sea Monsters

Venus on the Waves (detail), 1769, Francois Boucher. J. Paul Getty Museum.
Venus on the Waves (detail), 1769, Francois Boucher. J. Paul Getty Museum.

What is worse than a shark? Oh, that’s right. A lot. More»

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Also posted in Exhibitions and Installations, J. Paul Getty Museum

Who Was James Ensor?

The Skeleton Painter / James Ensor
Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp. © 2014 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / SABAM, Brussels. Image © Lukas-Art in Flanders vzw, photo Hugo Maertens

Belgium’s most eccentric, scandalous, and shocking painter is the focus of an exhibition at the Getty Center this summer. More»

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Also posted in Behind the Scenes

Three Cameras, One Painting—Pollock’s “Mural” on Video

Laptop with Jackson Pollock's Mural
Behind the scenes during production of videos about Jackson Pollock’s Mural. Painted 1943, oil and casein on canvas, 95 5/8 x 237 3/4 in. The University of Iowa Museum of Art, Gift of Peggy Guggenheim, 1959.6. Reproduced with permission from The University of Iowa

Midcentury painting inspires 21st-century video. More»

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Also posted in Art

Scott Schaefer on the Meaning of Collecting


The retiring paintings curator walks the galleries with us one last time. More»

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Also posted in Conservation, Getty Conservation Institute, Research

The Value of Record Keeping: Frederick Hammersley’s Painting Books

Frederick Hammersley's paints and studio tools / Albuquerque, New Mexico
Frederick Hammersley's paints and studio tools as left on his painting table at his home studio in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The artist’s remarkably detailed records offer a huge boon to conservation science. More»

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Also posted in Art, Getty Research Institute, Research

Frederick Hammersley Foundation Donates Archive to the Getty Research Institute

Page from Notebook 3 / Frederick Hammersley
Page from Notebook 3, Frederick Hammersley, 1978. Artwork © Frederick Hammersley Foundation

“Despite their precise lines and construction, Hammersley’s work displays a personal touch, guided by his belief in intuition as an important principle for art making.” More»

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Also posted in Art, Exhibitions and Installations

Is That An Art Exhibition In Your Ear?

Portraits: An Exhibition in Tif Sigfrids' Ear
Can you find the exhibit? Tif Sigfrids with L.A.'s smallest gallery show, Portraits: An Exhibition in Tif Sigfrids' Ear.

L.A.’s smallest gallery show is currently taking place inside a human ear. More»

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Also posted in Art, J. Paul Getty Museum

Laughing Out Loud! Rembrandt Self-Portrait Now on View at the Getty

Close-up of face in Rembrandt Laughing / Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn
Rembrandt Laughing (detail), about 1628, Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn. Oil on copper, 8 3/4 x 6 3/4 in. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2013.60

A youthful, confident Rembrandt shakes things up in the paintings galleries. More»

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      #ProvenancePeek: Winslow Homer at the Met

      Every art object has a story—not only of how it was made, but of how it changed hands over time until it found its current home. That story is provenance.

      The provenance of this Winslow Homer marine, or seascape, is relatively straightforward as these things go. It was entered into the stock books of M. Knoedler and Co, prominent New York art dealers, in October of 1901. Knoedler & Co purchased the painting, titled Cannon Rock, from Chicago pastor and educator Dr. Frank Gunsaulus on October 24, 1901. Just over two weeks later, on November 9, the firm sold it to art collector and dry goods merchant George Arnold Hearn. Hearn made a gift of his collection to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1906, and that is where Cannon Rock has lived ever since.

      This seascape is one of Homer’s later works, notable for its flatness. Homer spent the last 25 years of his life living in coastal Maine, painting land- and seascapes that both respect and challenge nature’s authority. Cannon Rock’s mellow provenance tale belies the powerful scene it presents.

      The stock books of the Knoedler Gallery have recently been transformed into a searchable database which anyone can query for free.

      Cannon Rock, 1895, Winslow Homer. Oil on canvas, 40 x 40 in. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of George A. Hearn, 1906 (above); pages from the Knoedler stock and sales books listing the painting (below).


      #ProvenancePeek is a monthly series by research assistant Kelly Davis peeking into #onthisday provenance finds from the M. Knoedler & Co. archives at the Getty Research Institute.


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