Judith H. Dobrzynski
Judith H. Dobrzynski
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Articles

Discovering Art Nouveau
The early modernist style, evocative of the natural world, can be seen in abundance in whimsical buildings throughout Europe.

February 16, 2021  •  The Wall Street Journal

There's hardly a more rewarding aspect of travel than strolling a new locale, like a modern-day flâneur. The experience is especially sweet when you see something unexpectedly stunning, as I did some years ago in Riga, Latvia. I knew about its Art Nouveau district, yet when I came upon Albert Street, lined with pastel-hued buildings festooned with faces, figures, peacocks, flowers and other Art Nouveau motifs, I was stopped in my tracks by their beauty.

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Masterpiece: Meteorological Majesty
Albert Bierstadt's "A Storm in the Rocky Mountains, Mt. Rosalie" looms as large in American cultural history as its towering peaks

January 9, 2021  •  The Wall Street Journal

In mid-June 1863,the celebrated German-born American painter Albert Bierstadt ventured by wagon into the high Rocky Mountains west of Denver, scouting scenes for a Colorado painting. When he got to the area below the Chicago Lakes, he was "in raptures with the scenery," according to his companion. Soon he unpacked his brushes and paints to make an oil sketch.

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Covid-Era Exhibits Promote Art as Therapy
To soothe visitors unsettled by the pandemic, some museums are showing works that aim to foster calm and hope

November 19, 2020  •  The Wall Street Journal

As the coronavirus pandemic began to rage early this year, the Bass Museum of Art in Miami Beach had a problem. A planned exhibition—Abraham Cruzvillegas's "Hi, how are you, Gonzo?"—was interactive. "It was very touchy and germy," said Silvia Karman Cubiñá, the museum's executive director and chief curator. "It was not possible."

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Masterpiece: A Holy Trinity of Glittering Beauty
Three separate works combine to create the dazzling Lindau Gospels.

November 7, 2020  •  The Wall Street Journal

In what seems like alchemy, three pieces of art, made at different times in the eighth and ninth centuries in disparate parts of Europe, were turned into an amalgam that is considered one of the greatest treasures of the Morgan Library and Museum: the dazzling Lindau Gospels.

To make this marvel, an illuminated manuscript of the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John was encased in a gold, jewel-encrusted front cover and a silver-gilt, gem-studded back cover, both featuring images of Christ but in highly divergent styles. Who did it, when and why are unknown. Until the book first appears in the records of a nunnery in Lindau, Switzerland, in 1691, the provenance of the pieces is unclear or incomplete.

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Abroad At Home: Temples of Singular Tastes
Take a virtual tour of four richly idiosyncratic collectors' museums in Europe.

November 2, 2020  •  The Wall Street Journal

Care to see a painting of Venice's Grand Canal by Canaletto, a 17th-century key to Windsor Castle's state apartments, a stained-glass image of Henry VIII's heraldic badge (c.1530), fourth-century B.C. Greek vases, models of the Bank of England (c. 1803), an elephant's tooth, a 13th-century B.C. alabaster Egyptian sarcophagus, and many more antiquities, paintings, rare books, architectural fragments, plaster and cork building models, and other curiosities—all in one small museum?

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