Was Sandro Botticelli Accused of Heresy for a Painting he Made of the Assumption of Mary?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to paintings and painters and whether they are true or false.

PAINTING URBAN LEGEND: Sandro Botticelli was accused of heresy for a painting he made of the Assumption of Mary.

Alessandro di Mariano di Vanni Filipepi, better known as Sandro Botticelli, was a famous painter during the Renaissance.

Here is an alleged self-portrait of himself…

Botticelli is most famous for his work, 1486’s The Birth of Venus, which is one of the most well-known paintings in the entire world…

The great biographer of artists of the era, Giorgio Vasari, told the tale of a painting by Botticelli about the Assumption of Mary, mother of Jesus (from 1475-77)…(click to enlarge)…


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Was Henri Rousseau’s Work Re-Discovered When One of His Paintings Was Purchased for Its Canvas Alone?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to paintings and painters and whether they are true or false.

PAINTING URBAN LEGEND: Pablo Picasso discovered the work of Henri Rousseau by purchasing one of his works that was being sold for the canvas, not the painting itself.

Henri Rousseau was a Post-Impressionist painter in France during the late 19th and early 20th Century who did not have very much success with his work most of his life.

His nickname was Le Douanier, which means “the customs officer,” which happened to be his main occupation.

A self-taught artist, Rousseau mostly drew scenes of the jungle.

His work had a unique, flat feel to it that was regarded at the time as being child-like.

Here’s a piece of his from 1905 (click to enlarge)…

During the early 20th Century, though, a new wave of artists were making the scene, people like the aforementioned Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso.

They viewed art quite a bit differently than most of the established art scene of the late 1890s/early 1900s, so in Rousseau, rather than seeing a childish painter, Picasso saw a non-conformist unsullied by academia, which was something that Picasso himself was rebelling from at the time (1908).

In addition, Picasso was interested in “primitive” artwork, art from Africa – Rousseau was also influenced by African art with his jungle work.

In any event, the tale of HOW Picasso came across Rousseau is quite amazing.
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Did the Museum of Modern Art Hang a Matisse Painting Upside Down for Over a Month?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to paintings and painters and whether they are true or false.

PAINTING URBAN LEGEND: Henry Matisse’s Le Bateau was hung upside down at the Museum of Modern Art for 47 days.

Henri Matisse was one of the most famous artists of the 20th Century.

One of the leading figures of the modern art movement, Matisse was primarily known for his expressive usage of color in his work.

His style changed dramatically over the years, and by the end of his life (he died in 1954), he was working primarily in “paper-cut” paintings, where he would cut out pieces of paper and he would arrange them along with paint into interesting configurations.

One of these works was called La Bateau, and it was finished in 1953, a year before his death.

It’s a beautiful piece of work.

In any event, in 1961, the piece was hung at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

There was just one problem.
Continue reading “Did the Museum of Modern Art Hang a Matisse Painting Upside Down for Over a Month?”