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Art of History

Author: Amanda Matta

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Episodes from history, viewed through great works of art. No pre-reqs required! New episodes every month. Hosted by Amanda Matta, art historian and TikTok's favorite royal commentator.

42 Episodes
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Artist and illustrator J.C. Leyendecker (1874-1951) helped shape modern American visual culture as the mind behind advertising campaigns like the legendary “Arrow Collar Man.” He was also responsible for countless covers for the Saturday Evening Post—one more, in fact, than Norman Rockwell.  Modern biographers also hold that Leyendecker was a gay man. Critics are now asking themselves whether his sexuality permeated into some of his most iconic commercial illustrations.  Today's Image: J.C. Leyendecker, “Record Time, Cool Summer Comfort,” (advertisement for Kuppenheimer menswear) (c. 1920). Oil on canvas. National Museum of American Illustration, Newport. ______ This episode is brought to you by BetterHelp. Give online therapy a try at betterhelp.com/ARTHISTORY and get on your way to being your best self. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The internet has been ablaze with hot takes on King Charles III's brand-new royal portrait by British artist Jonathan Yeo. Does it depict a strong, capable monarch? Or one who is overshadowed by the chaotic state of his institution and modern world? ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Adélaïde Labille-Guiard (1749–1803) rose from shopkeeper’s daughter to an official portraitist of the French royal court—only to have her achievements reduced to ash by the Revolution. While she defied societal barriers to build a remarkable artistic career, Adélaïde's legacy was long overshadowed by celebrated portraitist and memoirist Élisabeth Vigée-Lebrun. Today, we’re joined by Bridget Quinn, author of the first (!!) full biography of the trailblazing artist: Portrait of a Woman: Art, Rivalry, and Revolution in the Life of Adélaïde Labille-Guiard. Quinn offers a fascinating new perspective on the layers of Adélaïde’s life—and her work. We discuss her life, her feminism, her sexuality, and her alleged “feud” with Vigée-Lebrun. Pick up a copy of Portrait of a Woman here. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The Chevalier d'Éon (1728–1810) is known as a transgender icon, living the first half of their life as a man, and the second as a woman. Theirs is also a life that is remarkably documented in contemporary artwork. But how much can we conclusively determine about how the Chevalier viewed themselves from their portraits? Today's Image(s): Alexandre-Auguste Robineau, The Fencing-Match between the Chevalier de Saint-George and the Chevalier d'Éon (c. 1787-9). Oil on canvas. Royal Collection Trust. And: Thomas Stewart, Chevalier d'Éon, after Jean-Laurent Mosnier (1792). National Portrait Gallery. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
How did the daughter of an African ruler become goddaughter to Queen Victoria? A young black girl named Aina, later called Sarah Forbes Bonetta (1843–1880), began life in West Africa. But she would grow up to become a popular member of Victorian royal circles. Today's Image: Hannah Uzor, Aina, Sarah Forbes Bonetta Davies (2020). Acrylic & fabric on canvas, 120x80 cm. Osborne House, United Kingdom. Hannah Uzor on the English Heritage Podcast Tour Scotland with me! | Tour Germany & Austria with me! ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
The Death of Lady Jane

The Death of Lady Jane

2024-02-0101:25:41

With the tragic demise of Lady Jane Grey (1537-1554) serving as inspiration for countless works of art, it was hard to select just one to focus our attention on. But I did it, and in this episode, we dive into the short life of England’s Nine Days Queen. Today's Image: Paul Delaroche, The Execution of Lady Jane Grey (1833). Oil on Canvas. National Gallery, London. ______ Join me in traveling this year! Scotland Trip | Germany + Austria Trip ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Amanda is joined on the podcast for this special episode by Jennifer Higgie, author of The Other Side: A Story of Women in Art and the Spirit World.  Uncover the role that spiritualism has played in art, particularly since the dawn of modernism, and delve into the biographies of some trailblazing female artists who were all influenced by the occult. The first major work of art history to focus on women artists and their engagement with the spirit world, The Other Side is so much more than a retelling of art history. It is an exploration of the ways that the otherworldly has shaped mankind’s (and womankind’s) creative expression. The Other Side by Jennifer Higgie is available right now, from Pegasus Books. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
At age 42, a nun named Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179) decided to heed the command—which she believed came from God—to write down that which she saw and heard. It just so happened that what she saw and heard were visions from Heaven, containing extraordinary sights and sounds that would capture the attention of Popes and Emperors alike for centuries to come. Today's artwork: Hildegard von Bingen, Self-Portrait frontispiece from Scivias (1142-1152). Ink on parchment. Wiesbaden State Library. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
It may have been easy for Joséphine de Beauharnais (1763-1814) to scoff at the “extraordinary destiny” once promised to her by a fortune-teller. From the Island of Martinique, where she spent her girlhood, to the shadow of the guillotine, where she became a single mother, Josephine likely never would have predicted her remarkable rise to become “more than a queen”—until, that is, she met one Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821). Today's Image: Sir David Wilkie, Joséphine and the Fortune-teller (1837). Oil on Canvas. National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Listen to me on Lady Audaci-TEA: Spotify | Apple Podcasts Subscribe to my newsletter, The Fascinator. Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod | @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Swiss painter Henry Fuseli (1741-1825) was the man behind one of art history’s most famous spooky paintings: ‘The Nightmare.’ But how much do you actually know about this dream-fuelled Gothic image? Henry Fuseli, The Nightmare (1781). Oil on Canvas. Detroit Institute of Arts, Michigan. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Last seen in 1945, the Amber Room is the world’s most valuable missing piece of art, valued as highly as $500 million. Looted by the Nazis after Operation Barbarossa, this “Eighth Wonder of the World” once symbolized peace and unity. Today, it instead represents one of art history’s greatest mysteries. Today's Artwork: The Amber Room. Catherine Palace/Tsarskoye Selo State Museum and Heritage Site. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dr. Kathleen B. Jones joins us on the podcast to discuss not only her new book, CITIES OF WOMEN, but also to dive into the life of literary and artistic icon Christine de Pizan (1364/65-1431). Listen to our conversation to hear how Christine became not only the first professional female writer in Europe, but also the first person in France to earn a living as a writer, period. Plus, we discuss the ins and outs of medieval manuscript-making, and the parallels between the obstacles faced by professional women in Christine's day and our own. ‘Cities of Women’ is out on September 5, 2023 - get your copy here! Today's Work: Christine de Pizan, ‘The Book of the Queen’ (Harley MS 4431) (c. 1410-1414). Parchment manuscript. 36.5 x 28.5 cm. British Library, London. ______ Thanks HelloFresh! Go to HelloFresh.com/50arthistory and use code 50arthistory for 50% off plus free shipping! ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
When historians first made the link between a book of hours at Trinity College, Cambridge and two others belonging to Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn, they weren't just identifying who owned it. Yes, yes - the book was owned by Henry VIII's right-hand-man (for a time, at least): Thomas Cromwell. But this remarkable book has now become the only object from any 16th-century portrait to survive to this day. What can such an item tell us about the man who owned it, his times, and what he wanted everyone who saw his portrait to know? Today's artwork(s): Hans Holbein the Younger, Portrait of Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex (1532-33). Oil on panel, 30.7 in × 25.2 in. Frick Collection, New York. AND the 1527 Book of Hours, on display at Hever Castle through November 2023. __________ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast Twitter: @ArtHistoricPod TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact __________ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Divorced, beheaded, died... divorced... A house connected to Anne of Cleves (1515-1557), Henry VIII's fourth wife, is currently on the market! Let's discuss the Grade I listed property and a tidbit of Anne's story in this Art Bite. _________ Thanks HelloFresh! Go to HelloFresh.com/arthistory50 and use code arthistory50 for 50% off plus free shipping! _________ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Grant Wood (1891-1942) is probably best known for his double portrait depicting a man and woman on a farmstead - that icon of American painting, American Gothic. But his career encompassed so much more, and was marked by an uncanny ability to weave and deconstruct "American values"—whatever those are. In The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, Wood builds us a dreamscape in which we can confront the fables and myths of our national identity head-on. And I'm bringing it to you just in time for Independence Day! Today's artwork: Grant Wood, The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere (1931). Oil on Masonite. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
I’m so excited to be bringing you the first of a NEW offering on the Art of History podcast! 🎉  These “Art Bites,” as I’m calling them, will be a casual place to discuss pieces of news that pertain to topics we’ve either discussed on the show, or which activate my art history brain.  Our first Art Bite is centered on an upcoming auction at Sotheby's, where a privately-owned portrait of Katherine Parr will go up for sale in July. Tune in to hear me geek out about the power display going on in this representation of Henry VIII’s sixth and final queen. (We also chat about royal jewelry).  See more on the Old Masters auction and the Coronation auction here. Today's artwork: Katherine Parr, attributed to “Master John” and dated to the mid-1540s ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast Twitter: @ArtHistoricPod TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mark Rothko (1903-1970) was at the forefront of a generation of American artists who revolutionized the scene, right down to the way we understand the very essence of the artistic process. Even as he rejected both the label of Abstract Expressionism and even the idea that his paintings were technical masterpieces, he is nonetheless a “key protagonist” of the Abstract Expressionist movement and a fierce advocate for the artist’s freedom of expression. Today's Image: Mark Rothko, ‘Untitled (Red over Dark Blue on Dark Gray)’ (1961). Oil on canvas. Berkeley Art Museum, University of California. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Despite his short life, French painter Thèodore Gèricault (1791-1824) is remembered of one of the giants of art history. In his evocative masterpiece The Raft of the Medusa, Gèricault laid the groundwork for the Romantic era in the visual arts.  It's easy to get swept up in the vast spectrum of human emotion on display in the canvas. But how much of this painting was drawn from real life events? Today's image: Théodore Géricault, The Raft of the Medusa. (1818-19). Oil on Canvas. Musée du Louvre, Paris. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Marie-Rosalie, or Rosa, Bonheur (1822-1899) has been lauded as the most celebrated woman artist of her time. Her breathtaking animal paintings showcase not only her technical skill, but also her so-called “radical” ideals. But just how “radical” was Rosa—who has been lauded as a feminist art historical figure—actually setting out to be? Today's Image: Rosa Bonheur, The Horse Fair (1852–55). Oil on canvas; 96 1/4 x 199 1/2 in. (244.5 x 506.7 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Wayne Thiebaud on The Horse Fair Linda Nochlin: Why have there been no great women artists? ______ Please support the podcast by taking Airwave's short listener survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/airwave. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast TikTok: @artofhistorypod // @matta_of_fact Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Today, gender is largely understood as a fluid concept. And while an increasingly loud minority insist that "men are men and women are women," and that’s simply the way it’s always been…a look through the lens of art history is just one way to quickly realize how flawed that worldview just might be. Jusepe de Ribera (1591-1652) provides that lens in his 1631 portrait of Magdalena Ventura, subtitled 'The Bearded Woman.' Is this a depiction of a woman boldly defying gender norms? Or simply a person existing with the hand they were dealt by nature? Today's Image: Jusepe de Ribera, Magdalena Ventura with Her Husband and Son (La Mujer Barbuda) (1631). Museo Fondación Duque de Lerma, Toledo, Spain. ______ Please support the podcast by taking Airwave's short listener survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/airwave. ______ New episodes every month. Let's keep in touch! Email: artofhistorypod@gmail.com Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/matta_of_fact Instagram: @artofhistorypodcast Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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Comments (2)

Irina Kislitsina

hi, episodes seem to not work anymore

Jul 14th
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Jenny Franks Davis

Found you on TIkTok and jumped over to hear more.

Sep 29th
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