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“A Boy of the Boston School”

Under the heading of coming distractions…


You’re invited to a talk I am giving at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston next Wednesday evening at 7 p.m. 


The boy in the title is me.  The Boston School refers to the painting orthodoxy that held firm in these parts for nearly half a century after modernism “arrived” with the Armory Show of 1913.  When the museum asked me to talk about growing up under the MFA influence, I leapt at the chance because I’d been introspecting idly for a long time on imagery and taste, how we learn (or don’t) our expressive possibilities, how the Boston of my boyhood got so stuck in the past, and why those Sargents and many lesser Back Bay Vermeers have come to look so stylish and beautiful after all.  The late Elizabeth Paxton–student, model and wife of William McGregor Paxton, a pillar of the Boston School–was a family friend and a woman of authority and huge fascination when we were growing up.  She re-emerged a couple of years ago as a star of the marvellous MFA show (and book) “A Studio of Her Own.”  And I wanted to especially to remember and reexamine my devotion to her. 


So please come if you’re willing to hear me think out loud, and toss the question to you, about the pictures in our heads.


{ 2 } Comments

  1. leke açıcı krem | March 31, 2010 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    Great Post! Good work!

  2. Medical Paper | January 16, 2012 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again soon!