Johannes Vermeer, The Concert (detail), ca. 1665, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston (stolen 1990)
Twenty-five years ago today, two thieves stole thirteen works of art–together valued at around half a billion dollars–from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. It was the largest property crime ever in this country, and one of the most famous art thefts of all time. The stolen items have never been returned. The Gardner is still offering a $5,000,000 reward for their recovery.
Among the works lost were five drawings by Degas, a painting by Manet, three Rembrandts, and one of only about three dozen Vermeers in existence.
The Gardner is commemorating this milestone with a slideshow on its website, where you can learn more about these works and the events of March 18, 1990.
The Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington are among the nation’s most important collections of Asian art, with a particular strength in the arts of China. In addition, they are home to works from ancient Egypt, the Islamic world, and the United States, including James McNeill Whistler’s famous Peacock Room at the Freer.
You can read the press release about Open F|S here.
William P. Barrett, The Library of George Frederick Ernest Albert Prince of Wales, 1904, University of Delaware Library, Newark
The University of Delaware Library’s own William Augustus Brewer Bookplate Collection is the subject of a recent post in the Artstor Blog. The story highlights the Library’s collection of well over 12,000 bookplates dating from the 18th through 20th centuries, all of which can be viewed in Artstor.
The Brewer bookplates represent just one of many image collections from the UD Library that are available in Artstor. And even for non-Artstor subscribers, the Library’s collections are made freely available to anyone through the open-access Shared Shelf Commons.
A Renaissance statue of Adam by the Venetian sculptor Tullio Lombardo has been put back on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art after more than a decade of conservation. The marble statue had shattered in 2002 when its pedestal buckled beneath its weight.
The Harvard Art Museums have reopened after a six-year expansion. The new complex, designed by architect Renzo Piano, unites the three museums (Fogg Museum, Busch-Reisinger Museum, and Arthur M. Sackler Museum) under a single roof.
Artstor has released a new version of its Offline Image Viewer (OIV). For Mac users, OIV 4.0 is compatible with OSX Mavericks (version 10.9), but it is not yet compatible with Apple’s newest operating system, OSX Yosemite (version 10.10). So if you use OIV, I would recommend waiting to upgrade your system to Yosemite until Artstor has addressed this known issue.
You can find more information about new features in OIV 4.0, along with detailed instructions for installing it, in the Artstor Blog.
A new collection in Flickr assembles millions of images from copyright-free (pre-1923) books that had previously been digitized and placed online. The story of the technology behind this project is maybe even more interesting than the images themselves, as you can read about here.