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Blog Posts by Subject: Art History

Art Books: Various Small Books: Referencing Various Small Books By Ed Ruscha

“In plain sight, but overlooked, the gas station excites interest in Ruscha” (p. 21), but also serves as a document of the everyday world that co-exists with our routine and triggers our nostalgia as we see it change over time. Read More ›

June 2014 Reader's Den: "The Judgment of Paris" Part 4

In “In Praise of Art Forgeries” Blake Gopnik argues that muddying the ability to authenticate art works, as Warhol’s Factory artists did (sometimes attributed to him, sometimes not) can help to bring positive attention to works themselves, rather than their purely monetary value. As many letters to the editor in response suggested, this article may well have been mostly tongue-in-cheek. I suspect that he is questioning the role of the authenticator. This questioning of the role of art authentication is in some ways similar to the artists' questioning of the role of the Academy in "The Read More ›

June 2014 Reader's Den: "The Judgment of Paris" by Ross King, Part 3

Other recommended works:

The Girl Who Loved Camellias by Julie Kavanagh The fascinating history of Marie DuPlessis chronicles the life of the courtesan who inspired Alexandre Dumas fils’s novel and play La dame aux camélias, Giuseppe Verdi’s opera La Traviata, George Cukor’s film Camille, and Frederick 

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June 2014 Reader's Den: "The Judgment of Paris" by Ross King, Part 1

Welcome back to the Reader's Den! This month we'll be looking at The Judgment of Paris by Ross King, about a turbulent era in art history.Read More ›

Reference Book List: A Selection of 'Classic' Artist Manuals

Although we may not know for sure that a certain artist consulted a certain manual, they provide important clues. In a way, these books tell a story about the history of art from the point of view of the practitioners.Read More ›

一本书读懂西方艺术史 || A Very Short View of Western Art

Chi 709.4 Yi Ben Shu 一本书读懂西方艺术史 == Yi ben shu dong xi fang yi shu shiRead More ›

Pic Pick: Francis Martin Creation Station Has Artsy Picture Books for Children

In my efforts to rebel against the paper plate and crayon phenomena I created the kids art program "Creation Station". Every other Tuesday I pick a modern/contemporary visual artist and order some of the library's extensive monographs on that particular artist.Read More ›

Monuments Men Reading List

The Monuments Men film was a slightly fictionalized version of the incredible true story of the activities of the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives Program at the end of World War II. Though much of the action really happened, some of the names and details were changed. If you enjoyed the movie and want to learn more, here is a list of suggested titles.Read More ›

Special Libraries in Focus: the Metropolitan Museum of Art

I know that the Met is one of the major art museums in New York City, so I was thrilled when a librarian from the Watson Library agreed to give staff from NYPL a tour of the Watson and Nolen libraries, which are open to the public, free of charge. The librarians provided us with tours of both the Watson and Nolen libraries, and staff were allowed to ask questions. The librarians who led our tour were very knowledgeable and friendly. The Met libraries are a great resource for anyone wishing to research art history.

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Drawing People and Places: A Resource List

Balthus — The Mediterranean Cat, 1949This Friday, teaching artist Josh Millis will begin his 10 session drawing class for adults 55+ at Jefferson Market Library. (This class is full, but check out the Creative Aging classes being held at other 

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The Art of Anna Bella Geiger

Harper Montgomery, a writer in the Wertheim Study, has curated a fascinating exhibition at Hunter College, going until May 4. At 68th and Lexington, it is a smallish (read: do-able) delight — Open Work in Latin America, New York & Beyond: Conceptualism Reconsidered, 1967-1978.

It features prints, artists' books, photography and videos, photocopies, all sorts of experimental treats, including Ed 

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Art and Low-Vision: MoMA Presents an Introduction to Modern Art

As part or our art and low-vision series we are excited to have The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) present a series of free lectures and art-making workshops at the Andrew Heiskell Library this winter. The content of this program series is based on free monthly touch and verbal description tours conducted at MOMA for adults who are blind or partially sighted. MoMA also conducts programs such as these for families. All programs will take place in the first floor 

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The Pompadour's Book: A Mystery Manuscript Owned by Madame de Pompadour

It's a small volume, neatly but unostentatiously bound in mottled calf. The gilt ornamentation is discreet, except for an impressive coat of arms on both boards. That becomes even more impressive when we identify it as the blazon of one of the standout personalities of 18th-century France, Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, marquise de Pompadour — elevated from her haute-bourgeois background and a boring union with a certain M. Lenormand d'Étioles (nephew of her mother's lover) to become the official maîtresse-en-titre to 

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Weddings and Marriages at NYPL: A Research Guide

Courtesy of New Line Cinemas/HBO Productions: Sex and the City at NYPLIn Sex and the City: The Movie, Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) ascends the iconic marble steps of The New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street wearing a stunning Vivienne 

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The Face of Intellectual Beauty: The New York Review of Books at 48

First published on February 1st, 1963, The New York Review of Books has been hailed to be one of the world's leading intellectual literary magazines. Known for its sharp and critical insights, commentaries and book reviews on culture, literature and current affairs, The NYRB has had much success in gaining attention from and written contributions by eminent scholars, intellectuals and writers such as Margaret Atwood,

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Spencer Collection Book of the Month: The Rain of Crosses

The New York Public Library business card logoDid you know that The New York Public Library has an official color? I didn't either, and I've worked here since the Dark Ages (before the Internet). But we do, as I found out when I ordered new business cards recently. The color is red.

That's fine with me—I've always liked red (political considerations aside), and besides it gives me an excuse to select as the Spencer Collection Book of the Month for April a small volume containing two illustrations in vivid red. It is appropriate also because Easter falls in April this 

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Postscript to "Kippenberger's Quixote": The Missing Piece

About a week after my most recent post, something extraordinary happened. Regina Fiorito, a representative of the Estate of Martin Kippenberger (represented by the Galerie Gisela Capitain in Cologne) contacted the Library about it. "We would like to be in touch with Kathie Coblentz from the Spencer Collection, we read her blog today about a Kippenberger book. We (The Estate 

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Come See the Mystery of Picasso

Black ink soaks through a transparent canvas to form an image drawn by the master, Pablo Ruiz Picasso

In Le Mystere de Picasso (1956), director Henri-Georges Clouzot creates a new type of art documentary: one which manages to capture art at the very moment of conception. The transparent canvas allows the camera to capture each stroke of the artist's brush in real-time, beginning in 

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Spencer Collection Book of the Month: Kippenberger's Quixote

Kippenberger's Don Quijote de la Mancha book object (detail)When is a book not a book? For this month's Spencer Collection Book of the Month, I have a couple of answers in mind.

From the point of view of contemporary art, the answer might be, "When it's a book object."—"Art which makes use of the book format or the structure of the book; typically ... unique sculptural works that take the form of, or incorporate, 

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The Talent Show @ MoMA PS1

Adrian Piper, a pioneer in conceptual art exploring race and gender, is among the artists included in the Talent Show.The permeable concepts of fame, publicity, and exhibitionism in the age of reality television and social networking are some of the themes explored in the exhibit The Talent Show—on view at MoMA PS1 in Long Island City, through April 4, 2011.

The show, organized by the Walker Art Center 

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