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Morgan Library New York Irvina Lew Travel Writer

Treasures From the National museum of Sweden Come to the Morgan Library

Considered one of New York City’s greatest treasures, the Morgan Library & Museum showcases manuscripts, art, history, and architecture, and through May 14th, Treasures from the Nationalmuseum of Sweden: The Collections of Count Tessin. An extraordinary group of more than 75 masterpieces are on display while Sweden’s largest and most distinguished art institution is undergoing a major refurbishment. Franc?ois Boucher The Triumph of Venus

The current show displays the extraordinary assemblage of Swedish Diplomat Count Carl Gustaf Tessin (1695-1770), which is the core holding of the Nationalmuseum. Tessin, who was a politician, courtier, diplomat, public official, artist, writer, historian, collector, and philosopher, amassed much of his collection of about 2,000 items while he lived in Paris from 1739 until 1742, serving as Sweden’s unofficial ambassador to the French court. Tessin was very much in contact with the best artists of the era from whom he also commissioned works. An elegant, art-buying lifestyle cost the count such a fortune that it left him with major financial problems. By 1749, he was forced to sell 243 of his paintings to King Frederick I, who in turn presented them to Crown Princess Louisa Ulrika, Tessin’s confidant. In 1750, Tessin sold most of his drawings to Louisa Ulrika’s husband, Crown Prince Adolf Frederick. Fortunately, the collection remained in the family’s royal palaces until they moved to the museum in 1866.

Rembrandt Three Thatched Cottages by a Road

Among the artists represented, Italian masters include Domenico Ghirlandaio, Raphael, Giulio Romano, and Annibale Carracci. Northern European artists are represented by Albrecht Dürer, Hendrick Goltzius, Peter Paul Rubens, Rembrandt van Rijn, and Anthony van Dyck. Jacques Callot and Nicholas Poussin, as well as Count Tessin’s French contemporaries Antoine Watteau, François Boucher, and Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin illustrate the accomplishment of 18th-century French art.

dead game and rifle jean-baptiste oudry

In the exhibit, masterwork drawings by Chardin, along with his small oils, illustrate exquisite and emotional interior scenes. The Morning Toilette shows a governess as she prepares a young aristocratic girl for morning mass. One of the most striking paintings is a jubilant and luminous, some say erotic—The Triumph of Venus, c. 1740—one of three paintings commissioned by Count Tessin and exhibited at the 1740 Parisian Salon. A group of paintings of birds, roosters, and animals by Jean-Baptiste Oudry, including The Dachshund Pehr with Dead Game and Rifle, illustrate the way that Tessin, a sophisticated collector, had a wide range of preferential subjects, including his own beloved pet.

Jacques-Andre?-Joseph Aved (French, 1702–1766), Portrait of Count Carl Gustaf Tessin

Among the 14 paintings in the exhibition is Portrait of Count Carl Gustaf Tessin by Jacques-André-Joseph Aved, which shows the collector among his art, books, and medals.

The Morgan has an important role in preserving and displaying important elements of Western civilization from 4000 B.C. to the twenty-first century. Since 2006, when renowned architect Renzo Piano—who also designed The Whitney downtown—completed the institution’s expansion, visitors enter the Morgan’s light-filled atrium entry and cafe on Madison Avenue. The soaring space links to the grandeur of its original palazzo home on 36thStreet, designed a century earlier by Charles McKim and owned by financier Pierpont Morgan.

The Treasures from the Nationalmuseum of Sweden exhibit was produced with a lead gift from the Michel David-Weill Foundation, with major funding by Gilbert and Ildiko Butler Family Foundation and Jerome L. Greene Foundation, and supported by The Johansson Family Foundation, Katharine J. Rayner, The Christian Humann Foundation, and the Barbro Osher Pro Suecia Foundation. For more information, visit




City Guide NYC

Celebrating the World’s Creative Capital

Irvina Lew marvels at the culture and character of Los Angeles.

In Los Angeles, 15 million inhabitants live within 88 incorporated cities and countless independent neighborhoods, including Hollywood, a place name that frequently substitutes for everything “showbiz.” About one percent of LA residents identify as Jewish; that accounts for the second largest Jewish population in the United States and the fourth worldwide after Tel Aviv, New York, and Haifa.

Jewish LA residents past and present have had substantial influence on contemporary culture. Movie titan, director, producer, writer and philanthropist Steven Spielberg tops Forbes 2014 list as the “most influential celebrity.” With profits from Schindler’s List, he created the Righteous Persons Foundation to fund projects for Jewish youth and established the USC Shoah Foundation Institute, which collects historical testimonies from Holocaust survivors and makes the visual history archive available worldwide.

Read the full story in Totally Jewish Travel

Painters From Paris Through Provence

This is a 3 part series.
Read the full article at Luxury Traveler

Luminescent landscapes lured plein-air artists to live and paint along France’s sunlit stretch of Mediterranean coastline from Collioure to Cagnes-sur-Mer and inland, too, in Aix and Arles. As a fan of the fabulous Fauves—my favorites include Bonnard, Braque, Cezanne, Chagall, Derain, Matisse, Miró, Picasso, Renoir, Signac and Van Gogh, Vlaminck and others–I wanted to tour the South of France where many lived, worked and exhibited decades before I took my first museum-studded road trip in and around Nice, 20 years ago. Read More


Chagall: An Art Trail in France


Read the full article:

Looking for Chagall’s Legacy

Pub: Jewish Travel 

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