The gift of a catalogue from the recent exhibition of Zurbarán’s Jacob and His Twelve Sons at the Frick reminded me of photographs I took at the Iglesia de los Santos Juanes in Valencia. It also reminded me of a smaller but equally fascinating exhibition that we saw at the Rijksmuseum in 2012. I’m working on something about Santos Juanes but in the meantime thought I’d throwback to Amsterdam six years ago.
On of the great joys of museum going is when a curator successfully leads you from one contrasting media to another. I always remember stumbling out of the Green Vault at the Albertinium Museum in Dresden bedazzzled with the baroque splendor of its gems, gold and silver and being confronted by the stark Tim Burton-like sculptures of Thomas Reichstein and Andreas Feininger’s black and white photographs of a long past Amercia. It was a strange juxtaposition of periods and medium and even stranger it worked.
Much the same effect was achieved with the Rijksmusuem’s mounting of a small exhibition to mark the publication of a catalogue of the complete works of the Dutch engraver Hendrik Goltzius (left in a self-portrait). In the preceding room are two enormous works: the most famous painting in the Rijksmuseum’s collection, Rembrandt’s The Militia Company of Frans Banning Cocq and Willem van Ruytenburch (The…
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