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Article

Sheila S. Blair and Jonathan M. Bloom

American historian of Iranian art. While studying mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, Ackerman met and eventually married Arthur Upham Pope, with whom she had taken courses in philosophy and aesthetics. In 1926 she and Pope organized the first ever exhibition of Persian art at the Pennsylvania Museum and helped create the First International Congress of Oriental Art. In ...

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Margaret Medley

English diplomat, collector and art historian. In 1947, as a member of the British Diplomatic Service, he was posted to Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, then the capital of the Nationalist Chinese government. He became interested in Chinese art and history and began a collection of porcelain, furniture and textiles at a time of political and economic uncertainty, when Chinese collectors were forced to sell. When he moved to the British embassy in Beijing in ...

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Dutch writer, critic and collector. He was raised in a cultivated and artistic merchant family but preferred writing to commerce. In addition to serving as an editor of the Volksalmanak voor Nederlandsche Katholieken, he published the Dietsche Warande. His lifelong advocacy of Roman Catholic emancipation is reflected in many of his short stories (written under the pseudonym Pauwels Foreestier) concerning Catholic life in 17th-century Holland. In ...

Article

French writer and collector. He wrote for a number of journals including Le Figaro, Le Voltaire and L’Evénement. He was the first to use the term Neo-Impressionism in a French publication (L’Evénement, 10 Dec 1886) after its use by Félix Féneon in September in ...

Article

Norman E. Land

Italian art critic, writer, poet and collector. He was one of the most engaging literary figures of the Italian Renaissance, known not only for his famous Lettere but also for political lampoons, erotic books and religious writings. He was the son of a shoemaker, Luca del Tura. From before ...

Article

Molly K. Dorkin

Paid adviser employed by collectors to recommend and facilitate the purchase of works of art. There is a long history of recruitment of art experts by wealthy patrons for advisery purposes. In the 18th century art historians such as Johann Joachim Winckelmann were actively advising leading collectors like ...

Article

Christophe Spaenjers

Statistical measure showing the development of art prices since a chosen base year. Index series are often represented as graphs, and allow for a comparison with the performance of other assets. An index also enables the measurement of the correlation of art returns with changes in valuations of other investments. Two techniques are commonly used to construct an art price index based on auction transaction data. First, so-called ‘hedonic’ methods use all available sales information to measure changes in quality-adjusted average transaction prices. Second, ‘repeat-sales’ regression models only use price information on artworks for which at least two transactions are observed to estimate the average return in each period....

Article

Christophe Spaenjers

Set of financial methods, instruments, and business models that are used in the Art market. Important developments since the 1960s include the spreading availability and use of art price information and price indexes (see Art index), the emergence of loans collateralized by artworks, repeated efforts to create art investment structures, and a strong growth in art market advisory services provided by wealth managers and new entrepreneurs (...

Article

Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time....

Article

Molly K. Dorkin

Prior to the 20th century, the attribution of works of art was not governed by rigid regulations, and art dealers and auctioneers assigned attributions based purely on aesthetic grounds. Works were attributed to the artist whose manner they most closely resembled, but they were not further distinguished on the basis of quality; as a result, many paintings purchased as Renaissance masterpieces in the 18th or 19th century have since been downgraded to studio works or even much later pastiches....

Article

Edward L. Goldberg

Italian businessman, art historian, collector and writer . He was born into a pious and moderately prosperous Florentine commercial family and educated by the Jesuits. He reluctantly abandoned his studies and a religious vocation for a lifelong career as a business agent and bookkeeper for local noble families, an occupation that provided him with many acquaintances in cultivated Florentine society. He had many friends among writers, including the painter and dialect poet Lorenzo Lippi, and painters, including Matteo Rosselli, Baccio del Bianco, Baldassare Franceschini and Carlo Dolci. He was an amateur artist himself with considerable skill in drawing and clay modelling and made chalk portraits of Tuscan notables (one set extant; Florence, Uffizi) and copies of venerated religious images. As a collector, he assembled two successive collections of mainly Florentine drawings from the 14th to the 17th century, with an emphasis on the later 16th century and early 17th. The first collection (Florence, Uffizi) was ceded to ...

Article

Etrenne Lymbery

In 1866 he entered the Ministry for the Colonies, which he left in 1886 to devote himself to book collecting, building up a remarkable library of French prints. He was guided by the bibliophile Eugene Paillet, a greater part of whose library he purchased in ...

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Prussian civil servant and collector. He served in Bayreuth and Potsdam and in 1810 joined the office of State Chancellor August von Hardenberg in Berlin, where as chairman of the Committee for the Reform of Taxation and Trade, he was influenced by English economic liberalism. He became director of the Technische Deputation für Gewerbe in ...

Article

Luca Leoncini

Italian doctor, scientist, scholar, art historian and antiquarian. He graduated in 1741 from Bologna University in philosophy and medicine and between 1743 and 1744 translated J. B. Winslow’s treatise on anatomy, Exposition anatomique de la structure du corps humain. From 1744 he served as doctor to Ludwig VIII, Landgrave of Hesse-Darmstadt (...

Article

Gabriel P. Weisberg

French art dealer, critic and patron, of German birth. Often misnamed Samuel, he was a major promoter of Japanese art and Art Nouveau. From a wealthy, entrepreneurial Hamburg family, he trained as an industrial decorator for ceramics under the guidance of his father and independently in Paris during the Second Empire (...

Article

Denys Sutton

Finnish art historian, dealer and archaeologist, active in England. After studying at Helsinki University, then in Berlin and Rome, he settled in London in 1906 and published The Painters of Vicenza, 1480–1550 (1909), based on his doctoral thesis. Through his friendship with Roger Fry, he was introduced to the London art world. He revised (...

Article

Philip Sohm

Italian art critic, dealer, engraver, restorer and painter. His place in history rests firmly on the hyperbolic 681-page poem La carta del navegar pitoresco (Venice, 1660), whose title and subtitle may be translated as ‘The map of pictorial navigation. Dialogue between a dilettante Venetian senator and a professor of painting, under the names of Ecelenza and Compare; divided into eight winds which lead the Venetian boat across the high seas of painting as the dominant power of that sea to the confusion of him who does not understand compasses’. It is an intensely patriotic and polemical defence of Venetian painting written in Venetian dialect and directed against those Roman and Tuscan standards represented by Giorgio Vasari. As the full title suggests, Boschini is enamoured with Giambattista Marino’s metaphoric language and frankly espouses a personal reading of art history from the perspective of an artist (he who ‘understands compasses’). The apparently unstructured exposition rejects objective, comprehensive and logically organized theories of art in favour of an eccentric art criticism that attempts to capture the immediacy and pleasure of vision itself....

Article

Simonetta Prosperi Valenti Rodinò

Italian historian, collector and writer. His special interests were the literature of Tuscany during the 14th and 15th centuries, medieval and contemporary art, sacred archaeology and ecclesiastical history. As a scholar of art he brought out (in 1730) a new edition of Raffaele Borghini...

Article

Pietro Roccasecca

Italian cardinal and patron. He was the younger brother of Guidobaldo (1545–1607), the scientist, mathematician and patron of Galileo Galilei, who wrote a treatise on perspective (1600). Francesco was educated at the della Rovere court at Urbino, where he probably studied with the poet Agostino Gallo (...

Article

Dutch collector and critic. He began his career as an artist, painting pointillist works such as Landscape with a Windmill (1894; Leiden, Stedel. Mus. Lakenhal), but soon turned to theory rather than practice. From 1895 he was an ardent defender of the anti-naturalist view, considering the role of art to be the representation of the inner life of the artist rather than the imitation of the visible world. He wrote widely on this and related topics in the periodicals ...