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Miro or Caravaggio? Is it possible one of the world’s greatest collections of old master art – the Berlin Gemäldegalerie – could be put into storage?

[in part artlog, theguardian] Rarely does a massive donation of art cause discontent, but Ulla and Heiner Pietzsch’s contribution to Berlin’s museums has fueled public outcry by pitting the old against the new in a fight for museum space. Berlin has struggled of late for that precious commodity as renovations continue at Museum Island and … Continue reading

Is this the Mona Lisa’s skeleton? Discovery of bones in Florence convent believed to be those of silk merchant’s wife who inspired Da Vinci

[MailOnline]  Archaeologists are convinced they’ve unearthed the secret behind the world’s most famous painting, the Mona Lisa. Buried beneath the floor of a convent in Florence, Italy they’ve found a skeleton they believe belonged to Lisa Gherardini, the model who posed for Leonardo’s da Vinci’s mysterious masterpiece. Lisa Gheradini, was the wife of a rich silk … Continue reading

Gold, Jasper and Carnelian: Johann Christian Neuber at the Saxon Court; The Frick Collection, New York City, through August 19, 2012

A Jeweler Picks Up Where Nature Left Off.  Johann Christian Neuber’s Gold-and-Stone Snuff Boxes at the Frick [The New York Times, http://www.frick.org%5D  Most intoxicating vices involve some kind of paraphernalia, designed for convenience, traveling light and, often, showing off. These run the gamut from engraved silver liquor flasks, Art Deco cigarette cases and Moroccan leather … Continue reading

UPDATE: Destruction of Timbuktu World Heritage Site by Islamist Extremists Continues Unabated

As we reported on June 29, Ansar Dine, the Islamist militant sect affiliated with Al-Qaeda, has declared war on Timbuktu’s ancient  monuments, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as being “idolatrous.”  In spite of international outrage and threats of UN intervention, the militants last week destroyed yet more 700 year-old tombs containing the remains of Islamic … Continue reading

Jane Austen’s Ring Sells for Five Times Estimate in Sotheby’s English Literature Sale

[artdaily.org]  LONDON.- Yesterday, July 10, 2012, in Sotheby’s English Literature, History, Children’s Books & Illustrations sale, a previously unknown gold and gem set ring belonging to the great English author Jane Austen, sold for £152,450 (US$ 236,770) – more than five times its pre-sale high estimate of £20,000-30,000. Eight bidders battled for the turquoise ring, … Continue reading

The New York Times Weighs in on the Purported Discovery of the Cache of Caravaggio Works, Presenting Decidedly Skeptical Views

In an article in today’s New York Times, entitled “Scholars Doubt ‘Rediscovered’ Caravaggio Drawings”, Elisabetta Povoledo writes from Rome as follows: As grand academic claims go, the researchers who say they have found dozens of drawings by the young Caravaggio chose a rather unorthodox way of making theirs. On Friday the researchers, Maurizio Bernardelli Curuz … Continue reading

Italian art historians ‘find 100 Caravaggio paintings’

The Telegraph today published two reports of the possible discovery of a cache of previously-unknown works by Michelangelo Merisi, better known as Caravaggio, in the Castello Sforzesco in Milan. The reports were picked up by, i.a., artnet.com, BBC News, and Bendor Grosvenor’s blog, Art History News.  Here are the reports. I.  By Nick Squires, Rome 8:30PM BST 05 … Continue reading

Bonhams smashes world record prices for Bentley and Rolls Royce in £22 million Goodwood Festival sale

  In a bit of a variance from our main theme of old master art, I thought I would highlight another of my passions, vintage automobiles.  This sale of just a few days ago at Bonhams featured some automobiles that are of such beauty, I feel they qualify as art objects. WEST SUSSEX.- The eyes of … Continue reading