By Cohen Rachel

while Gilded Age millionaires desired to purchase Italian Renaissance work, the professional whose opinion they sought used to be Bernard Berenson, along with his monstrous erudition, exceptional eye, and uncanny ability at attributing work. They visited Berenson at his attractive Villa I Tatti, within the hills outdoors Florence, and walked with him in the course of the monstrous deepest library—which he could ultimately bequeath to Harvard—without ever suspecting that he had grown up in a bad Lithuanian Jewish immigrant kinfolk that had struggled to outlive in Boston at the wages of the father’s paintings as a tin peddler. Berenson’s impressive self-transformation, financed through the explosion of the Gilded Age artwork industry and his mystery partnership with the good artwork broker Joseph Duveen, got here with painful charges: he concealed his origins and felt that he had betrayed his presents as an interpreter of work. however his approach of seeing, provided in his books, codified in his attributions, and institutionalized within the many very important American collections he helped to construct, is going on shaping the yankee figuring out of artwork 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 enterprise dealings and how his kin and companions—including his customer Isabella Stewart Gardner, his lover Belle da Costa Greene, and his pricey good friend Edith Wharton—helped to shape his rules and his legacy. Rachel Cohen explores Berenson’s internal global and extraordinary visible means whereas additionally illuminating the ancient forces—new capital, the constructing artwork marketplace, continual anti-Semitism, and the 2 international wars—that profoundly affected his life.

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Bernard Berenson (Jewish Lives) by Cohen Rachel

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