21 Episodes

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Terrible Beauty by
C. Griffith Mann
, curator

Master of Belmonte (Spanish): Saint Michael

Medieval art is very much about a multi-media experience.
#96
Photography by
Anna-Marie Kellen
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On Site
Gesture by
Nicholas Cullinan
, curator

Jackson Pollock (American): Number 28, 1950

This painting is incredibly honest; Pollock isn’t trying to fool us in any way.
#97
Photography by
Mark Morosse
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Dream Logic by
Joseph Scheier-Dolberg
, curator

Shitao (Chinese): Returning Home

This is a guy who’s asking the question, “Who am I, and what am I supposed to do with my life?”
#85
Photography by
Mark Morosse
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Boy Geniuses by
Timothy B. Husband
, curator

Herman, Paul, and Jean de Limbourg (Franco-Netherlandish): The Belles Heures of Jean de France, Duc de Berry

In the center of the book, they’re struggling with their compositional arrangements, but as they progress, they become incredibly inventive.
#84
Photography by
Katherine Dahab
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The Dark Lord by
Kurt Behrendt
, curator

Mahakala, Protector of the Tent [Central Tibet, Sakya Order]

It not only grabs my attention and pulls me into this alternate reality, but it plays very much with issues that I find threatening.
#81
Photography by
Eileen Travell
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On Site
Doomed by
Sabine Rewald
, curator

Otto Dix (German): The Businessman Max Roesberg, Dresden

He had such a clinical, nearly satirist viewpoint.
#73
Photography by
Mark Morosse
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Eternity by
Maxwell K. Hearn
, curator

Fang Congyi (Chinese): Cloudy Mountain

We’ve gone from the solid world into this confrontation with the ultimate emptiness of life.
#71
Photography by
Eileen Travell
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On Site
Metaphorical by
Shi-yee Liu
, curator

Liang Kai (Chinese): Poet Strolling by a Marshy Bank

He’s playing on the idea of the deceptive nature of what can be seen on the surface.
#68
Photography by
Katherine Dahab
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The Choice by
Walter Liedtke
, curator

Rembrandt (Rembrandt van Rijn) (Dutch): Aristotle with a Bust of Homer

The central problem of Western civilization is reduced to one guy who’s got to puzzle it out for himself.
#63
Photography by
Juan Trujillo
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Compassion by
Carrie Rebora Barratt
, associate director

John Trumbull (American): The Sortie Made by the Garrison of Gibraltar

Every one of his pictures has an agenda.
#61
Photography by
Katherine Dahab
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Motion Picture by
Asher Miller
, curator

Eugène Delacroix (French): The Abduction of Rebecca

It’s a still image, but I see it in motion.
#51
Photography by
Paul Lachenauer
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In the Void by
Betsy Kornhauser
, curator

Sanford Robinson Gifford (American): A Gorge in the Mountains (Kauterskill Clove)

The artist daringly creates an enormous void, and what he does so brilliantly is to fill the void with this extraordinary light.
#44
Photography by
Peter Zeray
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Juxtapositons
Sea Change by
H. Barbara Weinberg
, curator

Winslow Homer (American): Northeaster

The sea is a universal realm, and it’s a place that we don’t really understand.
#42
Photography by
Paul Lachenauer
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Juxtapositons
Unfinished by
Andrea Bayer
, curator

Jacopo Bassano (Jacopo da Ponte) (Italian): The Baptism of Christ

I think his age liberated him and that he was working on it for himself.
#31
Photography by
Bruce J. Schwarz
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Protective by
Alison Manges Nogueira
, curator

Giovanni Bellini (Italian): Madonna and Child

I can see a very deep sense of compassion, a mother’s desire to protect her child, which she may only be able to do for a short while.
#27
Photography by
Juan Trujillo
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Threshold by
Keith Christiansen
, curator

Berlinghiero (Italian): Madonna and Child

It’s an expression that can be dead, unless we engage ourselves in it.
#18
Photography by
Mark Morosse
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Sounds
Getting Lost by
Deniz Beyazit
, curator

Tughra (Official Signature) of Sultan Süleiman the Magnificent (r. 1520–66) [Turkey, Istanbul]

By looking closely I really discovered that there is a system. That there is a beauty. There is a sense of music even behind how these flowers work together.
#16
Photography by
Katherine Dahab
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Clips
Below the Surface by
Ian Alteveer
, curator

Jasper Johns (American): White Flag

As I warmed up to this work, I realized that a work can be inscrutable and you can still love it.
#19
Photography by
Karin L. Willis
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Open-Minded by
Navina Haidar
, curator

"Krishna Holds Up Mount Govardhan to Shelter the Villagers of Braj," Folio from a Harivamsa (The Legend of Hari (Krishna)) [Present-day Pakistan, probably Lahore]

One of the great masterpieces of world art was really given rise to by the openness of the Muslim mind.
#10
Photography by
Peter Zeray
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My First Time by
George Goldner
, curator

El Greco (Domenikos Theotokopoulos) (Greek): View of Toledo

To me the works of art that have the greatest impact are the ones that begin with reality and expand on the experience of reality.
#13
Photography by
Juan Trujillo
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Winners and Losers by
Xavier Salomon
, curator

Giovanni Battista Tiepolo (Italian): The Triumph of Marius

Tiepolo’s style, and the same is true for opera, is that more is more.
#5
Photography by
Oi-Cheong Lee
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