bury's blog

Delius Buys A Gauguin

Screenshot of Your Paintings: Portrait of Delius by Alexander Akerbladh after Jelka Rosen.

Last week I was transcribing a recording of my interview with the painter, Noel Forster (1932–2007), for a forthcoming monograph on him. Noel recalls his first stay in London, in Lupus Street, Pimlico. Strangely enough this was the very same street where I too had lived in 1975 after coming down from Oxford, and to add to the coincidence I had then moved to Oxford Road, Putney, where Noel had also lived.

A Frenchman in Cairo

Woodcut and poem by Emile Bernard from 'Couronne d'amour' (1902)

Twenty-seven percent of the Frick Art Reference Library's book collection has no other library location in WorldCat. One recent addition to these "uniques" is Couronne d'amour: poemes by the cloisonnist painter, Emile Bernard (1868-1941). It was published in 1902 by the Imprimerie E. Messina & Cie., Cairo, who also published Bernard's Extaxes et lutes, liberté: poemes in the same year.

Gilding the Gilded Age

The Moorish Room of James Buchanan Brady (1856-1917), otherwise known as "Diamond Jim," from the auction of his property at the American Art Galleries, New York, October 22-30 1917

Phase III of the digital collection, Documenting the Gilded Age, made possible by a grant from the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO), has just been completed. A collaborative project, this phase includes material from The Frick Art Reference Library and The William Randolph Hearst Archive at Long Island University (LIU) Post.

The Artist as Tavern-keeper

Color stipple engraving of a portrait of Thomas Keyse by John Chapman after Samuel Drummond c.1797

It's an interesting moment when a book dealer brings in something that neither the dealer nor you yourself quite know what it could possibly be. The item in question was an eight-page manuscript in ink, entitled Catalogue of an exhibition of paintings now exhibiting at the Lyceum Strand the whole painted by Mr Keyse. It looks like a maquette for a printed catalog, as the manuscript hand imitates typography. And it has “Kemish printer Borough” on its cover. Intriguingly, there is a date of 1827, crossed out in pencil and Nov 1797 inserted. There are 72 paintings of which seven are starred as for sale, mainly works not by Keyse. Painting No. 51 is described as “lately painted by Mr Keyse at the age of 78 years.” Keyse may have been born in 1721, which would give an approximate date of 1799 and probably before Keyse died on 8 February 1800; otherwise it would have said “painted by the late Mr Keyse.” Many of the paintings were auctioned by Peter Coxe, Burrell & Foster on Thursday, 4 August 1803, which would make a date of 1827 unlikely.

Collecting Spanish Art

Painting of King Philip IV of Spain, by Velázquez (The Frick Collection), acquired by Henry Clay Frick from Knoedler, 1911

The Frick Collection's Center for the History of Collecting was established in 2007. Its program includes a series of international symposia and it has begun to publish their proceedings. In November 2012, with the assistance of the Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica and the Center for Spain in America, we launched Collecting Spanish Art: Spain's Golden Age and America's Gilded Age, edited by Inge Reist and José Luis Colomer.