Agnew’s and Duveen: Seminar in Collecting and Display, London, 14 May 2018

The truth about Agnew’s and Duveen (1900-1930)
Barbara Pezzini

Monday, 14th May at 6pm

Institute of Historical Research, Senate House, Malet St London, WC1E 7HU
Pollard Seminar Room, N301, Third Floor

Major private and public collections worldwide – such as the London National Gallery, the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Washington National Gallery of Art – contain a wealth of pictures from the stock of art dealers Agnew’s and Duveen. Often works were purchased from one firm to the other or even held in joint stock. Famous pictures of shared provenance include Philip IV by Diego Velázquez (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), Man with a Falcon by Titian (Omaha Museum of Art), and Portrait of James Christie by Thomas Gainsborough (Getty Museum, Los Angeles). Both Agnew’s and Duveen managed a conspicuous flow of works of art from London towards collectors in the United States, and both firms dealt in the same sectors of the art market: European old-masters and British eighteenth century portraits.
The relationship between the two firms, however, has so far remained largely unexplored. Were Agnew’s and Duveen ‘friends’ or ‘enemies’, allies or opponents? Using hitherto unexplored primary sources from the Agnew’s archive at the National Gallery and the Duveen archive at the Getty Research Center, the paper will examine this question and present the origins and development of their relationship from 1900 to 1930. Agnew’s and Duveen’s rapport changed dramatically in these thirty years. In the early 1900s, when the newcomer Duveen captured the trust of the more senior Agnew’s, there was a respectful competition which evolved into a collaboration in the course of the 1910s. But in the 1920s Duveen’s attempted, in covert and not so covert manners, to annihilate Agnew’s, and this paper will investigate Duveen’s offensive strategies and Agnew’s coping mechanisms. In addition, and crucially for a seminar dedicated to collecting and display, this paper will focus on the relationship that both dealers fostered with public and private collectors, as it was essential to the survival, and instrumental to the demise, of their firms.
Barbara Pezzini is a London-based art and cultural historian with a wide range of publications on the art market, including reconstructions of fin-de siècle exhibitions of British painting, the Futurist shows in London, the relationship between dealers and scholars in the early twentieth century and their interactions with the art press. She is particularly interested in the study of the intersection of the art market with art criticism and art practice and how these are reflected in art prices. Barbara is the recipient of an AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Award between the National Gallery and the University of Manchester to study the relationship between the National Gallery and Agnew’s (1850-1950) and Editor-in-Chief of the journal Visual Resources. She is also part of a joint National Gallery/King’s College London project on (re)presenting data from the stock books of the dealers Thos. Agnew & Sons.

CFP: Collecting: modus operandi (Lisbon, 14-16 Feb 19)

Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation
Lisbon
February 14 – 16, 2019

Deadline: Mar 15, 2018

In 2019 the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum and the Art Library will have been open for 50 years. Gulbenkian is well known as Mr 5%, who wanted ‘only the best’, but this conference seeks to go beyond the biographical, or the anecdote, and to consider Gulbenkian in the light of his wider context. We particularly seek papers which reflect new research into the ways in which collectors worked, their networks, and their relationship with their collection, its accessibility and its future. We welcome papers which go beyond single-case studies of individual owners, seeking instead more transversal studies into how collectors worked and how they reflected the period in which they lived. We also hope to cast new light on the collecting of non-Western materials, especially the decorative arts of the Middle East.  Researchers with specific need of the Gulbenkian archives may be awarded financial support to make this possible. Continue reading “CFP: Collecting: modus operandi (Lisbon, 14-16 Feb 19)”

CONF: Art Dealers, America and the Art Market (Los Angeles, 18-19 Jan 18)

Los Angeles, CA
The Getty, 1200 Getty Center Drive
January 18 – 19, 2018

Art Dealers, America and the International Art Market, 1880-1930

 

The Getty Research Institute presents a symposium on the role of international art dealers in creating the collections, museums, and intellectual culture of the American art world in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Bringing together rich archival resources from the Getty Research Institute and peer institutions, and capitalizing on new methodologies made possible by the extraordinary quantity of information contained in the documentary record, this symposium illuminates the ways in which art dealers contributed to making America a prominent arena in the international art market, and their role in creating the major private collections that became the foundation of great American museums. Continue reading “CONF: Art Dealers, America and the Art Market (Los Angeles, 18-19 Jan 18)”

CONF: Art Dealers, America and the International Art Market, 1880-1930 (Los Angeles, Jan 18-19, 2018)

The Getty Research Institute presents a symposium on the role of international art dealers in creating the collections, museums, and intellectual culture of the American art world in the late 19th and early 20th century. Bringing together rich archival resources from the Getty Research Institute and peer institutions, and capitalizing on new methodologies made possible by the extraordinary quantity of information contained in the documentary record, this symposium illuminates the ways in which art dealers contributed to making America a prominent arena in the international art market, and their role in creating the major private collections that became the foundation of great American museums.

Free tickets available beginning November 29, 2017 at www.getty.edu/visit/cal/talks.html
Separate reservation is required for each day of the symposium Continue reading “CONF: Art Dealers, America and the International Art Market, 1880-1930 (Los Angeles, Jan 18-19, 2018)”

Conf: MORGAN: MIND OF THE COLLECTOR (Hartford, 10-11 Nov, 17)

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art
November 10th-11th, 2017

Click here to register online. Questions may be directed to faculty@wadsworthatheneum.org.

J. Pierpont Morgan (1837–1913) spent over 20 years traveling the globe gathering the largest collection of art and cultural artifacts of his time. Estimated to have exceeded 20,000 works of art, Morgan’s collections represent a broad historical, artistic and geographic range. Acting on his father’s wishes, Morgan’s son donated more than 1,350 works collected by his father to the Wadsworth Atheneum in his native Hartford. Continue reading “Conf: MORGAN: MIND OF THE COLLECTOR (Hartford, 10-11 Nov, 17)”

CONF: Morgan: Mind of the Collector (Hartford, 10-11 Nov 17)

Morgan: Mind of the Collector

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT, November 10 – 11, 2017

Edward J. Steichen, J. Pierpont Morgan, Esq., Alfred Stieglitz Collection, 1949, © 2017 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

J. Pierpont Morgan (1837–1913) spent over twenty years travelling the globe to amass the largest collection of art and cultural artifacts of his time. Estimated to have exceeded 20,000 works of art, Morgan’s collections represent a broad historical and geographic range of art and cultural artifacts. Acting on his father’s wishes, J.P. Morgan’s son, Jack, donated more than 1,350 works collected by his father to the Wadsworth Atheneum in his native Hartford.  In fall 2017, the Wadsworth Atheneum will mark the centennial anniversary of Morgan’s  gift and its historical impact with an exhibition, Morgan: Mind of the Collector.
The Wadsworth Atheneum will host an international symposium in conjunction with the exhibition to reexamine and showcase the latest research about Morgan’s collection and how he shaped the identity of the collector in the modern age. Continue reading “CONF: Morgan: Mind of the Collector (Hartford, 10-11 Nov 17)”