The Art Gallery of Ontario, Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum and the Met Cloisters in New York worked together to assemble an exhibit of 60 rare boxwood carvings. These were made in Northern Europe during the early 1500’s and represent a substantial portion of the world’s inventory.
Palm-sized and without provenance or artist credits the carvings are 600-year-old fascinators. Several are in the Thomson Collection at the AGO.
<Netherlands, Prayer Bead (David and Goliath), 1500-30; boxwood with metal fittings. The Thomson Collection, Art Gallery of Ontario. Photo – Craig Boyko/Ian Lefebvre, AGO>
<South Netherlandish, Rosary, 1509-26, 472mm x 57mm, Devonshire Collection, Chatsworth. Photo – Craig Boyko/Ian Lefebvre, AGO>
Dr. JOHN O’BRIAN has one impressive CV – author of numerous books on art criticism and history, writer of poetry and, since 1987, Professor of Art History at the University of British Columbia in VANCOUVER. He’s also the editor of the four-volume edition of ‘Clement Greenberg: The Collected Essays and Criticism (1986 and 1993)’. All four volumes were named to The New York Times list of “best” books of the year, and they’ve received hundreds of scholarly citations. <PHOTO ABOVE – ‘Atomic Lanes’, Michael Crawford, collection of John O’Brian>
Professor O’Brian also collects vintage photography, with a particular interest in the atom bomb and the nuclear age. He is guest-curating ‘Camera Atomica’, and exhibiting 200 photographs from his archive at the Art Gallery of Ontario – from July 8 until November 15/2015.
<PHOTOS ABOVE – Atomic postcard, explosion at Yucca Flat; a cave bomb shelter, June 1972; anti-nuclear war protest sign, July 1967; and hydrogen-bomb explosion crater, Yucca Flat, Nevada, October 1967>
<PHOTO – atomic bomb cloud dwarfs TORONTO’s Bank of Commerce, 475 feet high, destructive radius 2-miles plus> Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West, http://www.ago.net