Having looked last week at quilts, it seems only logical to take a look at samplers this week. Google Art Project has a total of 230 examples of this quintessentially female art form. The great majority of those come from the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum.
Quilts have been recognized as a long under-appreciated women's art form. I was therefore excited to find that the Internatiional Quilt Museum has 96 entries at the Google Art Project site. To me it's very moving to see all this painstaking, attractive work done by women in bygone decades.
Midori's comment of last week has encouraged me to post other Google Art searches that I like. You could try "silver," for example, and you would be rewarded with this pretty incredible page of images.
Again and again I'm drawn to the idea of the Americans Who Tell the Truth project. I'm not crazy about the artist's style but something deep within me responds to the basic idea of offering visual and narrative portraits of admirable Americans. Artist Robert Shetterly began this project after 9/11, in response to all the lies that were being told to the American people at that time. May we someday be worthy of greatness again.
So first I put the single word pink into the Search window at Google Art Project. From the many results thus delivered to me, my eye was drawn to Mixed Flowers on Pink Cloth, c. 1916, by Roderic O'Conor. This painting is one of many interesting works at Te Papa, a museum in New Zealand.
This Assumption of the Virgin, c. 1500, by Joachim Patinir, is at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It won't strike everyone as beautiful, but it has considerable appeal for me. First, I love the legend about how all the apostles were able to gather at Mary's bedside as soon as it became known that she was dying. Next, the figures of Christ and God the Father at the top, preparing to welcome Mary, are very nicely done. Finally, the roundels of the Nativity and the Resurrection, in the two upper corners, are remarkable for their detail.
Take a quick look at these drawings and prints from the wonderful collection of the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. If you scroll to the bottom of the page, you'll see that the selection just seems to go on and on.
The Google Art Project has six works by outstanding artist Robert Campin. Of these, I am especially taken with this panel of the Trinity done in grisaille. It is the Annunciation Triptych, however, which is the most astonishing. I have found myself drawn back to it again and again over the years.
Recently a dear friend described me as her 'beauty therapist,' that is, someone who leads her to beautiful things that then become her therapy. Wow -- if I had set out to become something wonderful, I don't think I would have dared hope for that description!
Just now I found myself wishing for some 'beauty therapy' of my own, and my eye turned once more toward the Grandes Heures d'Anne de Bretagne. I ended up starting with this portrait of St. John the Evangelist and then I just kept paging forward - it was wonderful. Highly recommended for anyone in need of a beauty vitamin. (Which is, after all, most of us.)
Here's a great example of why I often read Patrick Kurp's blog Anecdotal Evidence. Kurp was reviewing a recent book on the Romantics and science, and suddenly he swerves like so --
I’m reminded of another English text written almost two centuries earlier by the poet and divine Thomas Traherne (1637-1674). Centuries of Meditation is studded with passages suggesting a merging of scientific and spiritual attentiveness to the physical world. For instance: “When Amasis the King of Egypt sent to the wise men of Greece, to know, Quid Pulcherrimum? upon due and mature consideration they answered, The World. The world certainly being so beautiful that nothing visible is capable of more. Were we to see it only once, the first appearance would amaze us. But being daily seen, we observe it not.”