Monthly Archives: May 2018

May 31

Joseph Grimaldi: London’s Biggest Clown

On the 31st of May 1837, Joseph Grimaldi, the most popular entertainer of the Regency period, died in Islington, Greater London, England. His death, precipitated by depression and alcoholism, as well as frequent injuries caused by his risky on-stage behaviour, was a sad coda to his most exciting life. Known as the inventor of the […]

May 30

Rubens in Today’s Art Market: Priceless vs. Over-Priced

On the 30th of May 1640, Flemish Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens died in Antwerp (now Belgium). Known for his history paintings of mythological and allegorical subjects, one of his more recently discovered works,  The Massacre of the Innocents (1611–12, oil on panel, 142 × 182 cm, Thomson Collection, Art Gallery of Ontario) powerfully captures […]

May 29

Dennis Hopper: The Man Who Went Looking For America…

On the 29th of May 2010, American actor, filmmaker, photographer, and artist Dennis Lee Hopper died in Venice, California. Known in Hollywood for his insolent behaviour, Hopper made his debut on film in two roles with James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause (1955) and Giant (1956). After Dean’s death, and major falling out with […]

May 28

The Larssons’ Handmade, Homemade Bliss: Swedish Arts and Crafts

On the 28th of May 1853, artist and designer Carl Larsson was born in Stockholm. Following a difficult childhood spent in poverty, Larsson got a break when an art teacher recognised his talent and directed him towards a creative career. He started off working as an illustrator of books, magazines, and newspapers, then moved to […]

May 27

Nietzschean Influences in Isadora Duncan’s Dance Philosophy

On the 27th of May 1877, the great American dancer, considered the creator of modern dance, Isadora Duncan, was born in San Francisco, California. Her whole life was devoted to dance, it represented an extension through which she connected with the outer world, a channel for expressing her innermost yearnings, emotions and passions. She revolutionised […]

May 26

A.G. Baumgarten, The Man Who ‘Invented’ Aesthetics

On the 26th of May 1762, German philosopher Alexander Gottlieb Baumgarten was born in Frankfurt (Oder), Brandenburg. He famously introduced the current definition of the philosophical discipline of aesthetics in his Halle master’s thesis when he was only twenty-one years of age. He called this epistêmê aisthetikê, or the science of what is sensed and […]

May 25

Social Subtext in Gilbert & Sullivan’s ‘H.M.S. Pinafore’

On the 25th of May 1878, the comic opera H.M.S. Pinafore, or The Lass That Loved a Sailor, by Arthur Sullivan (music) and Sir William Schwenck Gilbert (libretto) had its premiere at the Opera Comique in London. The review that followed soon after the opera’s opening in The Musical Times and Singing Class Circular stated […]