Back…With A Masterpiece

Europe beckoned–I’ve been away for the last two weeks. Not to the art sales in London, but rather to Berlin and then to Bulgaria for a week. I saw a lot of art–fantastic art in Berlin, of course, and some interesting things in Bulgaria. I’ll share some of that here in the future.

But while I was gone–on Saturday–The Wall Street Journal published a piece I’d written a few weeks ago in the weekly Masterpiece column. Headlined Dazzling Reminders of Mortality, my piece examined four 18th Century sculptures carved by Ecuadorian master Caspicara. Never heard of him? He was an indigenous artist of whom Spanish King Charles III once said, “I am not concerned that Italy has Michelangelo; in my colonies of America I have the master Caspicara.”

Well, that’s a little bravado. But the four little sculptures in question, just acquired by the Hispanic Society of American Museum and Library, are spectacular. I invite you to read my piece. Here’s a look at all four of them

Caspicara was known for his exquisite carving and attention to anatomical details.  You can see both in the backs of these pieces as well as the fronts:



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