When we think of the works of Rubens, we first call to mind their sumptuous details, rich color choices, and daring compositions. And for the past century, art lovers and historians alike have pointed to his paintings as a pure embodiment of Baroque emotion. But in The Catholic Rubens, venerable art critic Willibald Sauerländer argues that this modern notion of Rubens must be underpinned by a deeper understanding of the religious in his oeuvre. Pieces such as this modello for an altarpiece show that the turmoil and tumult of Rubens’s work were designed to inspire religious exaltation.
Our spring book roundup! As the natural world begins to come to life again, it may be time to revisit your reading list. Here are our favorite books to complement the season.
Some Japanese Flowersis a stunning gift book featuring Kazumasa Ogawa’s exquisite hand-colored collotype prints. Flowers of the Renaissancelooks at various depictions of flora in art from this period and digs deeper into their meaning, uncovering hidden treasures in the grass at a saint’s feet, on the sleeve of an Elizabethan lady, and inside the lid of a Florentine wedding chest. Nature and Its Symbolsis the ultimate reference for art lovers and historians who are eager to discover the many meanings artists through the ages have connoted with a single flower. Irisesoffers an in-depth study of Van Gogh’s influential and evocative work.