By Rachel Cohen
While Gilded Age millionaires desired to purchase Italian Renaissance work, the specialist whose opinion they sought used to be Bernard Berenson, together with his giant erudition, excellent eye, and uncanny ability at attributing work. They visited Berenson at his attractive Villa I Tatti, within the hills outdoor Florence, and walked with him throughout the significant inner most library—which he may ultimately bequeath to Harvard—without ever suspecting that he had grown up in a negative Lithuanian Jewish immigrant relatives that had struggled to outlive in Boston at the wages of the father's paintings as a tin peddler. Berenson's remarkable self-transformation, financed via the explosion of the Gilded Age paintings marketplace and his mystery partnership with the nice paintings broker Joseph Duveen, got here with painful expenses: he concealed his origins and felt that he had betrayed his presents as an interpreter of work. however his approach of seeing, awarded in his books, codified in his attributions, and institutionalized within the many vital American collections he helped to construct, is going on shaping the yankee knowing of paintings today.
This finely drawn portrait of Berenson, the 1st biography dedicated to him in 1 / 4 century, attracts on new archival fabrics that convey out the importance of his mystery company dealings and how his kinfolk and companions—including his customer Isabella Stewart Gardner, his lover Belle da Costa Greene, and his expensive buddy Edith Wharton—helped to shape his rules and his legacy. Rachel Cohen explores Berenson's internal global and remarkable visible capability whereas additionally illuminating the old forces—new capital, the constructing artwork marketplace, chronic anti-Semitism, and the 2 global wars—that profoundly affected his existence.
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Extra info for Bernard Berenson: A Life in the Picture Trade
The Dreadnought Hoax marked the start of a period of great personal growth for Woolf. 43 The Author Matures 1910 –1913 One of the signs of passing youth is the birth of a sense of fellowship with other human beings as we take our place among them. — Virginia Woolf, “Hours in a Library” (1916) EMERGING IDEAS As Woolf’s circle of friends grew, so too did her social skills. She tried hard to overcome her natural shyness and was even the hit of a scandalous ball thrown in the fall of 1910. Her friend Roger Fry had arranged for several unknown artists to show their work at the Grafton Galleries.
Night and Day follows a young heroine named Katharine who must resolve her feelings about her marriage, her family, and her work. She is older and stronger than Rachel, the main character of The Voyage Out ; and, unlike Rachel, Katharine survives the story.
In the following passage, Woolf discusses the troubling instability of the female figure in history and male-written literature: . . [I]f woman had no existence save in the fiction written by men, one would imagine her a person of the utmost importance; very various; heroic and mean; splendid and sordid; infinitely beautiful and hideous in the extreme; as great as a man, some think even greater. But this is woman in fiction. In fact . . she was locked up, beaten and flung about the room. A very queer, composite being thus emerges.